P2P For Communications: Beyond File Sharing
by Cullen Jennings and David A. Bryan
Published Febuary 2006; Posted June 2006


Peer-to-peer (P2P) telephony and communications applications are generating tremendous interest and concern in the telecommunications community. EBay’s acquisition of Skype underscores the growing attention vendors are paying this technology, while BitTorrent and other file sharing programs threaten to taint the whole idea of P2P with connotations of lawbreaking and copyright infringement.


Vendors want to learn how P2P might help or hinder their IP-telephony products. Network operators wonder how they can keep P2P from overrunning other flows and disrupting their traffic management expectations. Meanwhile, industry researchers are exploring ways that P2P can be put to work in various network scenarios.


This article aims to explain what P2P is all about, and put some recent implementations and possible uses for P2P into perspective. Although the authors are actively engaged in P2P and SIP research, we have tried to address the industry at a general level and from a non-biased position.



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About the authors:

Dr. Cullen Jennings is a Distinguished Engineer with Cisco Systems specializing in VOIP, SIP and security. He is responsible for standards, forward looking architecture, and technology for the Voice CTO office. David A. Bryan is the CTO and founder of SIPeerior Technologies, targeting the P2P SIP market. Mr. Bryan is actively involved with the IETF and open source telephony projects.


This article is reproduced by special arrangement with our partner, Business Communications Review.


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