CBeyond: IP Peering Speeds VoIP to Enterprises

CBeyond Communications (Booth 708) was a pioneer of what is today generally called IP trunking, a service that links both traditional and IP PBXs to a service provider using IP trunks, saving money and opening the door for expanded services, even on legacy equipment.

Building on that effort, CBeyond now is working to establish standards for IP trunking, specifically SIP trunking, in an initiative called SIPConnect, so that every service provider will know how to connect its network to a broad range of PBXs with interoperability problems.

In this session, CBeyond will provide an update on the broader industry initiative that we have been championing and participating in trying to drive IP peering between IP PBX and service providers, said Chris Gatch, CTO at CBeyond, who will speak with colleague Greg Rothman, director of new product development at CBeyond. Since the last Channel Partners expo, good progress has been made. More service providers have announced products that offer SIP peering.

In the year that the voice specification for SIPConnect has been available, a number of service providers have adopted the specification.

I believe MCI Advantage now supports SIP peering to a limited number of PBXs, and US LEC made an announcement and BroadVoice will bring their own broadband out, said Gatch. So we are seeing examples where service providers are starting to offer the service.

In addition, manufacturers are showing increased support for SIP trunking. More PBXs are supporting it, and we are seeing better compatibility out of the gate, said Gatch.

Among the changes that Gatch will discuss in this session are specific additions to PBXs that will make it easier for service providers to peer with them directly. Many now support the ability to use a fully qualified domain name (FQDN) when specifying an external proxy. Until recently, most were capable only of specifying an IP address, which could change.

Despite the widening adoption of SIPConnect and the work to expand the specification, We are still in a mode today where you have to choose your partners, said Gatch. Because many PBX makers have their own extensions or choices within SIP in their PBXs, You cant take for granted that [peering] will work. They dont have to choose us, but, if Cbeyond is their partner, they know in advance which PBXs work with us, and if MCI, what PBXs work with them. You cant assume, just because someone says they are SIP, that it will work. Someday we will be able to say that, if it is SIP, it will work, but were not yet there.

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