IP and Mobile Centrex Application Portability through JSR 289
Investment in infrastructure carries many risks. One of the goals of the IMS and NGN approach is to minimise these risks, particularly when deploying new applications. Applications are required, both to fulfil customers’ needs and to provide new sources of revenue and profit for service providers. Traditionally, applications have been deployed in silos, each requiring its own infrastructure and presenting its own integration challenges. IMS and NGN architectures change this, through the promotion of application servers that can support multiple applications above a common infrastructure.
IMS and NGN architectures adopt the SIP model, with core network signalling standardised to SIP via specialised gateways or native SIP signalling from key elements. SIP signalling enablers are presented northbound towards the application layer via application servers.
Each application is presented with enablers from the core network, but in a common and scalable manner. The idea is that, once the supporting infrastructure is in place, any application can be deployed above the enabling components.
Until now, however, that vision hasn’t always met reality. In fact, many applications that require the support of an application server have required their own individual version of the application server, losing some of the advantage of the NGN architecture and adding to service deployment costs. It is neither economic nor efficient to force the introduction of multiple application servers for multiple applications. The increasing availability of JSR 289 SIP Servlet 1.1 containers changes this.
JSR 289 SIP Servlet 1.1 containers provide network services through which network and client requests and responses are processed. Incoming messages from the underlying network enablers are presented to client applications and vice versa. But, the critical element of Servlet 1.1 implementations is that this interaction is standardised. Thus, any application that can leverage Servlet 1.1 can use any other application server implementation, and vice versa.
This means that application portability is inherent with Servlet 1.1 compliance. A service provider that has already implemented a SIP application server with a 1.1 compliant Servlet can support any application that has also implemented the interface. Similarly, by choosing an application that requires a Servlet 1.1 container, a service provider can then deploy additional applications using the same container rather than being forced to deploy new application server instances. This has a significant impact on cost and time to market as existing elements can be reused more efficiently. With SIP Servlet 1.1 compliance, service providers can:
- Introduce new Servlet 1.1 compliant applications to existing compatible infrastructure
- Spread infrastructure investment costs across multiple applications
- Maximise ROI from SIP AS investments
- Reduce time to market through shorter integration cycles
Gintel’s Easy Virtual PaBX and other applications are Servlet 1.1 compliant. They can be deployed on an existing 1.1 compliant infrastructure, or when deployed, can allow the service provider to add further applications that support the same interface on the same infrastructure. This results in significant cost savings as the incremental cost of deploying new applications is reduced. In other words, the goal of IMS and NGN architectures is fulfilled with the advent of SIP Servlet 1.1. Significant cost savings can be achieved and the risk of deploying new service is reduced as the overall costs of infrastructure can be spread across multiple applications.
When deploying revenue generating services, it’s essential that service providers choose the most efficient overall solution, both in terms of CAPEX and OPEX. SIP Servlet 1.1 helps meet that goal. Watch out for a full white paper on deployment options from Gintel soon!