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New report examines mobile softswitch infrastructure market

Demand for mobile softswitch equipment is surging worldwide as operators cap spending on the "classic" mobile switc...


March 27, 2006  


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Demand for mobile softswitch equipment is surging worldwide as operators cap spending on the “classic” mobile switching center (MSC) infrastructure at the heart of today’s mobile networks and direct new investment to packet-based voice switching architectures in preparation for IP mobile networks, a new report from Unstrung Insider finds.

The report, Wireless Softswitching: Mobilizing IP, analyzes the technologies, standards, and economics supporting the migration from circuit-based to packet-based voice core networks.

The second part of the report is focused on vendor positioning in the mobile softswitch market.

It analyzes vendor momentum, in terms of customer contracts and unit shipments, and evaluates vendor product evolution strategies from “graceful” upgrades to existing MSCs through to new MSC server and media gateway products implemented on ATCA hardware platforms with industry-leading processing power and port densities.

Among the highlights of the report:

* 2005 was the year that mobile softswitches really took off and sounded the death-knell for legacy circuit-switched products. To prosper from this trend, equipment suppliers require a deep-rooted commitment to transforming their product lines.

* Operators see substantial capex savings from the move to softswitching, but many have yet to realize the promised opex benefits.

* Alcatel, Ericsson, Huawei, and Nokia are leading the vendor market, however, Nortel, Motorola, and Lucent are mounting challenges.

* Vendors are split between those promoting graceful upgrades to the installed base via an “H.248 Plug” and those with more aggressive, IP-oriented systems based on ATCA.

Companies analyzed in the report include Alcatel, Ericsson, Huawei Technologies, Lucent Technologies, Motorola, Nokia, Nortel and Siemens.