You need to be in Madrid to understand the true potential of IMS

Written by on May 5, 2017 in Opinion with 0 Comments

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The accepted wisdom is that it takes new technology 10 years to become invisible, or ‘just the way things work’. With IMS, it seems it has taken 10 years for the technology to become visible, very visible.

The advent of Software Defined Networks (SDN) has taken IMS out of the mysteries of the core network, where it was implemented many years ago (and few people knew why) to the tool that will bring telcos into digital contension. One day, perhaps, we will look back on 5G, NFV and voice controlled, well, everything and wonder why it all took so long to become ‘reality’.

Jan Rijk Vonk, driving innovation strategy at KPN believes it often happens like this and that “a few people will have the vision to see how things will fit together and what they will enable”. Then it takes 10 years for the rest of the world to catch up.

But catch up it has and it is now ‘front and centre’ in almost everything telcos are trying to do, as they themselves catch up with the more nimble ‘OTT’ players.

The agenda for the forthcoming IMS World Forum, now in its 14th year demonstrates this ubiquity perfectly.

Here are just some of the presentation titles:

  • VoLTE: The strategic top-down choice
  • Implementing an agile, robust and secure virtualised IMS
  • How is IMS changing with NFV?
  • Don’t hate the OTT player, hate the game
  • WiFi calling / WiFi handover: Creating a manageable, secure network where usage can be prioritised
  • IMS voice communications for the Internet of Things
  • Does the evolution to 5G equal simplified IMS?

With many of the talks being presented by telco representatives (always a good sign for a conference), it is easy to see the scope and depth it promises.

This, of course, is a huge relief. When IMS was the buzzword of the moment, it was on almost every operator’s strategic plan, but few knew why. Now, not only do we know why, but finally operators can see a return on a distant but expensive investment. Some telcos, Verizon being the most visible, are spinning off chunks of their network to offer network capacity on a pay as you go basis to others.

The world, as Vonk says, is becoming a wholesale one.

To hear from Jan Rijk Vonk, John Bebawy of Telus, David Moro of Telefonica and a host of other IMS practitioners, the 14th IMS World Forum in Madrid is the place to be on 23rd and 24th May.

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About the Author

About the Author: Alex was Founder and CEO of the Global Billing Association (GBA), a trade body focused on the communications sector. He is a sought after speaker and chairman at leading industry conferences, and is widely published in communications magazines around the world. Until it closed, he was Contributing Editor, OSS/BSS for Connected Planet. He is publisher of DisruptiveViews and previously BillingViews. .

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