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What is SIP?

Posted by Eric Moore on Mar 5, 2012 12:54:00 PM

 Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) is a signaling protocol used for establishing sessions in an IP network.

SIP is an established standard from the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), the body responsible for administering and developing the protocols that comprise the Internet. This IETF driven protocol represents a key component in the converging world of telecommunications based applications.

A session could be as simple as a two-way telephone call or it could be a collaborative multi-media conference session. The ability to establish these sessions means that many innovative services become possible – think of SIP as a simple toolkit that service providers can use to build converged voice and multimedia services.

Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) has become a growing force shaping today's telecom industry and the Voice over IP community has adopted SIP as its protocol of choice for signaling. One might assume it’s because of the relatively low cost to the carriers to provide the service and in turn the competitive pricing offered to the end user.

Though SIP is still evolving and being extended as the technology matures SIP does not do everything, and it does not solve every problem and has limits. Many manufacturers need to certify the provider prior to ensure that it will successfully interface with their hardware. This certification process can sometimes be time consuming and arbitrary in their selection method of whom actually gets chosen as a viable candidate.

Despite the red tape of certification, the benefits of SIP outweigh the challenges of implementation and are worth pursuing.  Primarily, it provides a similar feature set that the larger, more expensive circuits offer but for smaller applications: Scalable service starting with a single trunk, Direct inward dial numbers (DID’s) and foreign number service (FNS). Of the 3, FNS is the most impressive- it allows a company to take an established, published number from an entirely different rate center or central office and port it to anywhere in the continental USA.

To learn more about the SIP advantage, inquire with our office.

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