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Genband Demonstrates NFV-Enabled Session Border Controller

Company officials say the new distributed SBC will increase flexibility and drive down costs in network operators' infrastructures.


Genband is taking steps into the Network-Functions Virtualization space with a demonstration of its new NFV-enabled distributed session border controller at its Perspectives14 customer event in Orlando, Fla., June 10.

The distributed session border controller (D-SBC) will enable network operators to bring signaling to the edge of the network, providing greater deployment flexibility in sharing media, transcoding resources and centrally managing sessions, according to Genband officials. It also will offer high levels of performance in a smaller footprint, all of which are important to service providers looking to run cloud environments.

The new SBC, which reportedly will go into full trials in the third quarter, leverages the company’s Advanced Media Software (AMS) and IP signaling capabilities that will help network operators see capital and operational expense savings and improved energy efficiency, company officials said.

“The D-SBC represents a significant milestone in implementing Genband’s vision of NFV and cloud deployment as it enables a rapid evolution to cloud-based signaling solutions that leverage elastic scalability to generate cost savings and time-to-market benefits,” BG Kumar, chief product officer at Genband, said in a statement.

Network operators are looking to NFV as a way to keep up with the rapidly changing demands brought on by such trends as mobile computing and the cloud and the growing challenge from such over-the-top (OTT) threats as Google and Skype. Network operators over the years have built up legacy infrastructures that are unwieldy, based on expensive proprietary hardware and time-consuming to program, leading to long service development cycles. Web companies like Google are held back by such legacy infrastructures, and have created networks that are responsive to evolving demands from the increasing number of mobile users, putting pressure on the traditional telecoms.

A specifications group within the European Telecommunications Standards Institute since 2012 has released papers about NFV, including definitions and use cases. Through NFV, vendors can virtualize such network functions as firewalls, load balancing and intrusion-detection systems, removing them from complex hardware.

NFV and software-defined networking (SDN) are expected to help organizations create much more flexible, programmable, automated and cost-efficient networks by taking the intelligence and tasks off the underlying infrastructure.