The path to replacing MPLS with broadband
Hosted enterprise communication offers a good solution for enterprises looking to move their communication to the cloud and by doing so, reduce their CAPEX investment as well as benefit from a cloud managed solution that is regularly updated for supporting new technologies and features.
These benefits typically come with a caveat, however, a requirement to connect through MPLS to the communications service provider in order to reduce network impairments issues that impact voice quality.
MPLS comes with a high price tag. The chart above shows typical costs of MPLS in key countries in comparison to broadband. For example, in the US, monthly costs for 10 Mbps of MPLA would be approximately $1,250 while broadband would be slightly over $100.
This represents a significant difference that calls for realizing the cost reduction opportunity. However, the risk of not being able to ensure high voice quality keeps many communications service providers away from recommending this option to their enterprise customers.
Voice QoS is a combination of codecs and other algorithms
Voice quality is determined by network characteristics such as delay, packet loss and jitter combined with the tools used to mitigate network impairments once they happen.
Many of the communications services are using technologies (phones and network servers) that are built for LAN environments or dedicated networks, are not built for the open Internet.
IP-Phones and applications are using codecs such as G.711 or G.729. These codecs are not built for the open Internet both from the resilience and voice quality perspectives.
Voice algorithms such as Jitter buffer need to be tuned for the network and additional algorithms such as Forward Error Correction (FEQ) and packet loss concealment should be implemented.
The end result is that many deployments today are not built for working over broadband and therefore the common practice is to default to MPLS, thus increasing OPEX and delaying customer acquisition (as setting up MPLS may take a few months).
Perfecting voice over unmanaged networks
Yet communications service providers can allow their enterprise customers to benefit from lower cost broadband without replacing their network elements or customer’s phones.
To realize this, however, a few things are required:
- Real-time monitoring of the voice running over the network
- Transcoding to codecs built for unmanaged networks such as OPUS. OPUS has resiliency built into it by design and supports a wide bitrate range going up to ultra-wideband.
- Implementation and tuning of algorithms such as adaptive jitter buffer, FEC and packet loss concealment
- Smart routing and balancing of traffic between several broadband links if more than one link is available
AudioCodes’ VoIPerfect offers all these capabilities and allows communications service providers a route for easy adoption of this technology by deploying SW or HW elements at their access and customer premises while not replacing the existing deployed elements.
To learn more about the VoIPerfect and experience a real demo click here (http://online.audiocodes.com/voiperfect-for-ucaas-providers).