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Critical Mass for Next-Generation Networks

While next-generation networks (NGNs) promise rich applications that will eventually offset the decline in voice revenue, most carriers must support IP as well as their legacy networking technologies.

Among service providers, business success is often tied to how fast market strategies can be changed to meet competitive pressures and take advantage of new opportunities, according to a new market study by Insight Research.

To capture markets and create critical mass, rapid creation and execution of new services has become a necessity. Given the way applications are currently deployed and the complexity of their interaction in continuously evolving networks, new services deployments are difficult, costly, and limit the service provider's ability to drive ARPU and reduce churn.

Service providers continue to look for new cost effective means for efficient and effective application-to-network connectivity. As a result, hundreds of millions of dollars will be spent by service providers to connect or migrate existing applications as well as build new applications to retain customers and enhance meaningful ARPU across their networks.

According to a new white paper by Insight Research, Application Session Controllers (ASCs) are an important new approach to providing efficient and cost-effective application connectivity, application/session call control and the ability to mediate application mash-ups in a mixed networking environment.

Insight Research sees ASCs playing a significant role in six high growth application areas that will make up a $66 billion market by 2010. The six areas are: residential video telephony, fixed mobile convergence, file exchange, streaming service, location-based services, and presence-based services.

"As a purpose-built network element that combines call control, signaling, switching, and media capabilities coupled with multi-application support for both new and legacy applications, the ASC is an important tool for service providers." says Robert Rosenberg, President of Insight Research. "It lowers costs, preserves existing investments, increases ARPU, and provides application transparency for evolving networks, including IMS."

Service providers can realize on average a 40 percent savings in both capital and operational expenditures by leveraging the Application Session Controller functionality compared to re-purposing general purpose network elements for application connectivity.

Once within the network, an ASC provides on going efficiencies and time to market advantages for legacy and IMS applications. While at the same time, an ASC can drive ARPU by enabling service convergence and application brokering.

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