Today the traditional telecommunication technology is declining because of popularity and increasing demand of Voice over IP (VoIP) due to the reason that deployment, maintenance and operation of data networks based on IP infrastructure are less costly than the voice networks. Consequently, it is straight forward to think relaying all types of communications on data networks rather than maintaining in parallel two network technologies. On the other hand we see today increasing demand of integrated multimedia services, bringing together internet applications with telecommunications. In prospect of these global trends, the mobile communications world has defined within the evolution of cellular systems an all-IP network vision which integrates cellular networks and Internet. This is the IP Multimedia System (IMS) (3GPP, TS 23.228 (2005)), namely overlay architecture for provisioning of multimedia services, such as VoIP and videoconferencing on top of globally emerging 3G broadband packet networks.
Key Terms in this Chapter
Next Generation Network (NGN): A next generation network (NGN) as defined by ITU-T is a packet-based network able to provide services including telecommunication services and able to make use of multiple broadband, QoS-enabled transport technologies and in which service-related functions are independent from underlying transport-related technologies. It offers unrestricted access by users to different service providers. It supports generalized mobility, which will allow consistent and ubiquitous provision of services to users.
Open System Architecture (OSA): The open system architecture (OSA) describes the service architecture for 3rd generation mobile telecommunications network or universal mobile telecommunication networks (UMTS). OSA Standards are being developed and published by as part of 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) and ETSI. The OSA APIs are developed by parlay group and is called OSA/Parlay service framework.
Fixed-Mobile Convergence (FMC): FMC is the merger of fixed and mobile communication paradigms and IMS is considered as common platform for FMC granting convergence and compatibility between fixed/ mobile networks, multimedia and converged services support, and providing key community service enablers such as group management, presence, IM/PoC and generic VoIP /MMoIP support.
Third Generation Partnership (3GPP): The 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) is a collaboration agreement between mobile industries that was established in December 1998 to extend the GSM specifications toward Third Generation (3G) mobile system specifications within the scope of the ITU’s IMT-2000 project. 3GPP specifications are generally known as the UMTS system.
Voice Over IP (VoIP): Voice over Internet protocol (VoIP) is the technology for sending voice calls on IP-based network instead of using conventional voice telecommunication networks. VoIP protocol is used to carry voice signals over IP networks.
Service Delivery Platform (SDP): SDP is a foundation for the creation, deployment, provision, control, charging, and management of telecommunication services provided to the end users. The SDPs represent the programming interface enabling programming of the underlying network capabilities and therefore are primarily based in the usage of information technologies (ITs). SDP may apply to many technologies including VoIP, IPTV, HSD (high speed data), Mobile Telephony, Online Gaming, etc.
IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS): The IP multimedia subsystem (IMS) is standardised by 3GPP & 3GPP2 as next generation network (NGN) architecture to provide mobile and fixed multimedia services. It is based on VoIP, SIP, and IP protocols on the recommendation on 3rd Generation Partnership Project on top of GPRS/UMTS.