IMS Interconnect: Peering, Roaming
Published 2007, Posted January 2008
While service providers are rushing
to bring their initial IMS service offerings into commercial service, a number
of them are also beginning to look beyond their basic IMS architectures to
explore the potential for connecting to other carrier’s networks. By
interconnecting their networks, carriers are looking to extend their reach and
to leverage opportunities to explore new business models with partner providers.
These types of provider-to-provider connections are not a new phenomena, there are examples of interconnected carriers in the PSTN world, the mobile telephone environment, and in the IP service provider industry. The Internet is a perfect example of a fully interconnected network - subscribers can interact with other subscribers and services, regardless of which service provider they belong to.
The advantages of creating interconnected IMS networks include:
Carriers can provide services to their IMS subscribers while those subscribers visit geographies, regions, or networks where that carrier does not have a physical presence.
For voice traffic, carriers can bypass potentially costly network handoffs for calls to subscribers on other IMS networks by utilizing an IP network connection between the IMS networks to carry the traffic.
Carriers can utilize the transport and access networks of their business partners to offer seamless access to their subscribers, such as in a scenario where a wireless provider might team with a DSL carrier to enable their customers to utilize IMS services both in the home (via the DSL connection) and while they are traveling (via a 3G data connection).
Carriers can partner with multiple IMS applications/services providers to enhance the portfolio of applications and services they offer to their customers.
The purpose of this white paper is to provide an introduction to IMS interconnection and to identify some of the security considerations that carriers will need to address in order to achieve the proper balance of providing access while maintaining security.
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