Visitors to the Pacific island of Samoa to get a boosted reception from BlueSky
Squire Technologies, signalling specialists to the telecoms industry, today announced that it has been selected by leading Samoan service provider BlueSky to deliver its secure, robust Signalling Gateway (SVI_SG) solution to enable enhanced interoperability, interconnection and offer an extended range of roaming possibilities to its customers.
Bluesky Communications in the US territory of American Samoa is a leading provider of mobile, Pay TV and broadband since 1999. It's sister company, BlueSky Samoa is the leading provider of mobile, fixed line, IPTV and broadband services in the neighbouring Pacific Island of Samoa (independent State of Samoa). When travelling abroad, mobile users typically prefer to take advantage of roaming packages that allow them to continue to use their devices and services as normal - regardless of whether making or receiving calls, sending texts, accessing emails or browsing the web.
"We want to ensure more visitors to and between both Samoa and American Samoa are able to take advantage of the roaming options available with BlueSky and to make full use of their mobile services. To deliver increased roaming coverage we needed a specialist SS7 networking solution and selected Squire Technologies Ltd from the UK ", said BlueSky MD Adolfo Montenegro.
One of the main challenges faced by BlueSky was to obtain a solution that solved the specific technical issues and was not an element of a much larger - and hence more costly - solution. Squire Technologies solved the problem, as Alo Anesi, Head Systems Engineer, explains: "We specifically needed conversion between European and American SS7 standards, ETSI and ANSI, to facilitate interoperability. We found the product we were looking for on Squire Technologies' website and have been impressed by their technical knowledge, as well as their professional installation and support services".
Squire Technologies is supplying its innovative SVI_SG SS7 Signalling Gateway product, which has a range of optional enhanced features more normally provided in complex and costly SS7 network STP solutions.
Zacc Couldrick, Regional Sales Manager for Squire Technologies, was excited by the unique nature of the deployment for BlueSky. "While providing SS7 conversion is one of our core strengths, this deployment highlights the versatility of our products. We're delighted that BlueSky has selected Squire Technologies and are proud to have delivered a key component to enhance their roaming services"
Scaling to 256 SS7 signalling links in a single chassis and up to 512 signalling links in a full dual redundant/ high availability system, the Squire SVI-SG is a reliable, robust solution that enables operators to route SS7 messages efficiently and securely. It supports backhaul of TDM SS7 messages using IETF SIGTRAN standards, ensuring full compatibility between IP and legacy networks. The integrated STP function enables efficient message routing and supports virtual point codes for private SS7 networks.
IMS Compatible Media Gateway Controller Function Launched by Squire Technologies
Squire Technologies, the signalling specialists to the telecoms industry, have launched a new product: The Media Gateway Controller Function (SVI-MGCF). The SVI-MGCF delivers a comprehensive IMS enabled Media Gateway Controller Function allowing 4G networks to seamlessly interconnect to traditional PSTN and GSM networks over SS7.
Asked to comment upon the reasons behind his company developing such a product, Simon Dinnage, Squire Technologies' Business Development Director noted that it was a logical progression. He explains, "This is not so much a product launch for us as product evolution. We have been delivering Media Gateway Controllers for over 10 years and it has been a natural step for us to add the required 3GPP upgrades to make it an IMS compliant product. Our customers will be able to benefit from tried and tested carrier grade features whilst ensuring IMS compliance."
Simon continues, "We've noted that an increasing number of our customers, particularly the larger carriers, are moving into the IMS space by investing in 4G networks and providing LTE and VoLTE services."
"As such, it was important for us to continue to meet the needs of their networks, which was one of the key drivers in our development of the SVI-MGCF."
The SVI-MGCF offers a scalable way to integrate TDM interconnects into your 4th generation IMS network with flexible licensing allowing upgrade to :-
- 100,000 simultaneous calls
- 256 x SS7 Signalling Links
- Control of up to 100 Media Gateways
Flexible deployment options allow the MGCF to be deployed as a standalone MGCF integrating over industry standard MEGACO and SIGTRAN to incumbent Media and Signalling Gateways. Alternatively, Squire enables customers to take advantage of a complete solution incorporating Squire Technologies' industry proven Media Gateways (SVI-MG) and Signalling Gateways (SVI-SG).
Demand for SMS on Media Gateways Remains Strong in the Growing African Market
Squire Technologies, signalling specialists to the telecoms industry, are reporting that the African region is showing a keen interest in both its SS7 to VoIP Media Gateway and SMS pass-through features. Due the SMS feature's vast revenue potential, the region is showing particular interest in the SS7 to VoIP Media Gateway, which provides SMS pass-through. Squire Technologies' regional Sales Manager for Africa, Zacc Couldrick, noted a myriad of reasons why the African continent has seen rapid growth over the past twelve months. Zacc explains, "We've reported before that countries such as Ghana have experienced deregulation of the telecoms market, which has presented opportunities for telecom operators. SMS also enables mobile banking and the dissemination of news and marketing information to large audiences, which would otherwise have been impossible. These factors combined show that Africa has a great opportunity for growth and we have seen proof of this over the past few years."
iBurst, providers of broadband connectivity services in the South African market, is a loyal customer of Squire Technologies, and has used the SMS pass-through feature for a number of years.
iBurst's IP and Voice Manager, Nazeer Adam, explained the benefits of having pass-through enabled on its Media Gateway: "One of the key features for us in building our network was keeping the infrastructure manageable. When we looked at Squire Technologies' SS7 to VoIP Media Gateway, we were impressed with its enabled SMS pass-through, which saved us from spending additional CAPEX on further infrastructure. We have been satisfied with the service from Squire Technologies; in particular their commercial flexibility, which enables us to establish our services quickly and allows us to grow our resources as required."
In addition to providing SMS pass-through on their Media Gateway, Squire also provide SMS Gateways and SMS Centres for those companies that are looking to provide SMS services over a SS7 network.
Amidst the Cloud and Clamour for VoIP, Many Companies Continue to evolve TDM Networks
The continuing rise of VoIP and the shift towards cloud based technologies has been well documented over recent months, but companies also appear to be continuing to evolve their TDM based infrastructure, particularly in the African and Middle-Eastern markets. Squire Technologies, the global signalling specialists to the telecoms industry, are reporting increased sales for their TDM based products such as the SS7 SS7 STP and those offering interconnection with NGN VoIP such as their TDM to SIGTRAN Signalling Gateway for IP backhaul and SS7 to VoIP Media Gateway
Asked to comment upon the continued demand in the TDM arena, Squire Technologies' Sales Director Sanjeev Verma noted the ongoing trend of telecom operators maximising their existing CAPEX. He explains, "We've seen companies such Vodafone and Orange in developed markets like the UK agree to share their networks; and one of the prime motives must be to get as much value as possible out of their existing CAPEX. TDM still has a major role to play in developed markets as we're seeing companies across the board moving slowly to VoIP whilst continuing to enhance their TDM infrastructure as their network's needs dictate."
Sanjeev continues, "It is true that people are migrating towards VoIP based networks, but the speed of this migration has been somewhat over-exaggerated, particularly in markets such as Africa.
"We've experienced a particular increase in demand from Ghana as a result of the Ghanaian Government's decentralisation of the Telecoms market, whilst demand in countries such Nigeria and South Africa has remained strong for both TDM and convergent infrastructure. With companies such as Cisco withdrawing from the TDM space, we've seen many companies who aren't yet prepared to move to Cloud and VoIP technologies talk to us about how they can continue to use their existing infrastructure. Products like our Media Gateway Controller and Signalling Gateway which enable operators to use their existing TDM infrastructure have seen success as a direct result."
Business Development Director Simon Dinnage agreed that economic factors undoubtedly play a role. "Our clients are looking to squeeze as much out of their incumbent TDM networks as possible whilst slowly transitioning to all-IP networks. TDM networks offer 99.999% reliability and turn significant revenue; in the race to all-IP networks, only the largest of operators can afford to replace them wholesale and even they need to ensure that their major revenue generating TDM services are still supported in the interim. In the majority of cases it's a question of running a blend of both TDM and NGN networks to exact the greatest return."
West African Market Continues to Grow as Squire Technologies' Media Gateways Enable Innovative VAS Solution for Rancard
An innovative interactive voice application service provided by Rancard has been deployed using Media Gateway from Squire Technologies, the signalling specialists to the telecoms industry. The multifaceted service, which operates using the Rancard Mobility Content Server (RMCS) & Rendezvous technologies, boosts revenues by delivering targeted content from global and regional media players to mobile subscribers based on their interests and social graph. Rancard's service has previously been in the news as they received financing from Adlevo and Intel Capital.
Rancard operates the rancardmobility.com service delivery platform across Africa, the Middle East and parts of Europe where mobile phones provide the main source of information due the scarcity of fixed lines and other infrastructure. The Rancard voice content platform connects with the SS7 networks of telecom operators to supply their mobile users new services over the voice channel. Having done extensive research on SS7-VoIP infrastructure providers to enable their service, Squire Technologies Media Gateway was chosen.
Rancard's Chief Information Officer, Ebo Bentil cited Squire's experience in the industry as one of the key reasons why they were chosen, "We were looking for a provider who had a strong track record with SS7, VoIP, and could be easily integrated with rancardmobility.com platform APIs for RMCS and Rendezvous. In particular, we needed a company who specialise in carrier-grade SS7-VoIP conversion. Squire easily proved they met these criteria and this coupled with their commercial flexibility made them the obvious choice."
Squire Technologies Regional Sales Manager for Africa, Zacc Couldrick agreed that experience was the key factor, "The fact that we could demonstrate our experience in SS7, SS7 to VoIP and SMS both in the African market and globally was clearly an important factor. This has been a great project for us to work on; using many of our core strengths and we're always especially keen to work on networks which provide such innovative solutions and services."
After the initial deployment proved a success, Rancard requested further Media Gateways, which are to be deployed in a dual redundant formation in order to cater for the increasing demand for their services. Zacc continues, "One of our key principles is helping telecom companies to grow, and offering products and services which are scalable is an essential part of that. Rancard's service was always likely to grow rapidly and we're pleased they've also opted for the security provided by a dual redundant deployment."
Squire Technologies Partners With Leading US Software Developer IVR Technologies
Squire Technologies, the signalling specialists to the telecoms industry have announced a new partnership with IVR Technologies. The partnership will allow customers of the two companies to create complete end-to-end solutions that drive revenue, subscribers and customer retention to the network, whilst reducing operating and capital expenditures.
Squire Technologies' product suite includes solutions for SS7 protocol conversion, SS7 to IP Conversion, and SIP to SIP routing. Their products include Media Gateways, Softswitches, Session Border Controllers and SMS gateways which deliver proven signalling solutions for carrier networks based upon industry standards. These products have now been deployed alongside IVR's TalkingSIP platform which combines five traditionally separate network elements (application, media, real-time billing, location/registration and Class 5 features) into a single, cohesive solution for next-generation networks. As this combination is now pre-validated, carriers can quickly and readily deploy IVR Technologies' Talking SIP's in-demand enhanced services platform along with Squire Technologies' core switching technology with confidence and a time-to-market advantage.
"We've been impressed with the solutions that IVR Technologies offer; our companies' products are well suited in terms of the quality of service that they provide, and the features complement each other well. Providing high-caliber carrier-grade solutions is at the heart of everything we do at Squire Technologies, and that's a value that IVR Technologies clearly share," said George McCarthy, Americas Sales Manager, Squire Technologies.
"For next-generation carriers to be successful in today's highly competitive marketplace it is imperative that they offer a robust set of in-demand applications across the full spectrum of access points including land-lines, broadband, mobile, desktop and web -- Squire Technologies' core network switching solutions provide a high-quality pipeline in the carrier's network that encompasses all of these mediums. We are pleased to be partnering with a best-of-breed company like Squire Technologies for unified access to the complete suite of Talking SIP enhanced service applications," said Barry Sher, vice president of Business Development, IVR Technologies, Inc..
Squire Technologies Announce Record Revenue from The Americas
Squire Technologies, the signalling specialists to the telecoms industry, are reporting record sales in the Americas region over the past financial year. Squire's Signalling Transfer Point (SVI-STP) and Signalling Gateway (SVI-SG) have both been at the forefront of this growth, as both have seen significantly increased demand after the Cisco End-of-Life announcements for their ITP series.
Reflecting on the successes of the past 12 months, George McCarthy, Squire's Regional Sales Manager for the Americas, cited the options that Squire's provide as alternatives to the ITP as one of the crucial factors. He explains, "The Cisco ITP has been deployed in two ways; some use it as Signalling Gateway, whilst others utilise it as a Signal Transfer Point. We've attracted a lot of business by offering both these products individually. It seems that many in the market are pushing the more high-powered Signal Transfer Point, whereas we've experienced success with both products. Many come to us having been told they need the STP but the far cheaper SG is perfectly suited to their needs, so we've also saved them a lot of CAPEX simply by accurately diagnosing their needs."
Sanjeev Verma, Squire Technologies' Global Sales Director, noted that the breadth of Squire's services was another key factor in the increased demand for Squire's products. He explains, "Networks are always built to suit the unique requirements of the companies they serve; so being able to offer some flexibility is essential. To take a recent example, we enabled MTP3 functionality on a Signalling Gateway in order to provide low-level STP functions. Our engineering team have enabled such flexibility since our inception over 10 years ago, so they have a wealth of experience. This is frequently reported as one of the key reasons why customers choose us."
Squire will be boosting their Americas presence as they attend International Telecoms Week (ITW) at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Chicago, USA from the 13th-15th May. George continued, "ITW has been a great platform to meet both current and potential customers for the past few years. We'll be exhibiting once again, and are looking forward to talking to people about our Cisco replacement products and the rest of the Squire portfolio." Squire will be exhibiting at stand 1030 at ITW.
Asian Telecom Giant HGC Deploys Squire Technologies' Signalling Gateway
Hutchison Global Communications (HGC), one of Asia's foremost Telecommunications providers, have successfully deployed Squire Technologies' Signalling Gateway on behalf of one of their clients: a large Tier 1 operator. HGC were looking for a dual redundant solution which could take their SS7 Signalling over IP using SIGTRAN. In addition, they needed a solution which would allow advanced MTP3 functions, thereby enabling low level STP functions within their SG.
HGC were seeking a provider who had a reputation within the SS7 marketplace and also one who could meet their lead times, which were shorter than might normally be expected. Squire Technologies were able to meet the shorter deadlines, and were selected thanks to their decade of experience within both the SS7 and VoIP markets.
Hutchison Global's Jack Lee praised Squire's ability to meet his company's unique needs, "We've been impressed by Squire Technologies' flexibility in many areas of their business. Initially we were pleased by the way they handled our client's request for customisation as they quickly understood the objectives of the project. They were also flexible commercially in both their willingness to meet our shorter lead times and the way in which they worked with us to keep the project within its budget."
Zacc Couldrick, Squire Technologies' Regional Sales Manager for the Asia Pacific region paid tribute to Squire's Engineering team for making the HGC project a success, "As soon as we received the details from HGC we believed it was a project we could fulfil, and our Engineering team have once again excelled themselves in both the quality and speed of their work. Our Signalling Gateway is an excellent product for handling SS7 to IP conversions, helping customers interconnect their Next Generation Networks to their legacy TDM networks. We always aim to meet the customer's commercial needs; be they lead time, customisation or budgetary; the HGC project is a great example of how we always put the customer first."
Squire Technologies will also be exhibiting at this year's International Telecoms Week held at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, Chicago, USA from the 13th - 15th May 2013. Zacc continues, "We're looking forward to meeting both current and potential customers alike at ITW, which has proven to be a success for us over the past few years."
Demand for Telecom Interconnects On The Rise
Interconnects to major international telecommunication operators have been in increasing demand across the past 12 months, according to a provider to the industry. Squire Technologies, who offer a managed Interconnect service to operators such as BT, Telecom Italia and France telecom, have reported record sales for their services, as companies strive to offer the enhanced reliability and reputation such interconnects can provide.
The increased demand for this service has coincided with an increase in complexity in some of the testing required for IP Interconnects, which had previously been simpler than the traditional SS7 Interconnect process. Squire Operations Manager, Brad Knight, discussed the progressing in the complexity of the tests, "BT are one example of how interconnect testing has become more stringent in recent years, in that their SIP Approval used to be simpler than their SS7 Interconnect testing. Recently, both types of Testing have become increasingly detailed, but with our experience and success rate, more companies are turning to us to help them through. Our team assist in areas such as paperwork completion, through to being on hand during the testing window, which helps make the process as smooth as possible."
One of the more recent customers to utilise Squire's Interconnect service are Invoco, who were seeking an Interconnect with BT. Invoco's Managing Director, Jeremy Strong, was impressed by the Squire support, "Squire's support throughout the certification process has been exemplary. They were able to handle our questions promptly which helped us to achieve the desired result."
Reflecting on the reasons why companies are choosing Squire for this service, Sales Director Sanjeev Verma pointed to the company's history, "With deployments in over 70 countries worldwide, Squire has done more SS7 & VoIP interconnects than most players in this marketplace. It was only natural to offer our expertise to the existing customers as well as new customers to assist them in improving the go-to-market time for their services and to achieve increased ROI on their CAPEX and at the same time reducing the OPEX."
Squire's Interconnect service works across their service range, from the TDM based products such as the Signalling Transfer Point, gateway products such as the Media Gateway through to the VoIP Based Products such as the Session Border Controller .
Cisco EoL Announcements Provide Increased Opportunities for the Telecom Sector
The Cisco End-Of-Life Announcements have sparked increased opportunities for companies continuing to operate in the TDM-VoIP convergent marketplace. With the TDM industry retaining market share alongside the VoIP industry, infrastructure providers in the TDM space are benefiting from Cisco's withdrawal. Telecom operators and system integrators alike appear to be searching for solutions which will allow for the reusing of existing infrastructure, in order to continue to benefit from their previous capital expenditure.
One such company is Squire Technologies, who are continuing to report strong demand for their Media Gateway Controller, Signalling Transfer Point and Signalling Gateway as a result of the two Cisco announcements. The End-of-Life Announcement for Cisco's ITP has seen Squire receive increased demand for their Signalling Gateway product in particular, as their Product Manager, Joe Williamson explains, "The Cisco ITP had dual uses, but the majority of people we speak to have deployed it as a Signalling Gateway. Our SVI-SG provides a seamless replacement for the ITP, allowing companies to save potentially large capital expenditure for replacements or upgrades of core network elements such as of Mobile Switching Centres, Intelligent Network Solutions, or Call Centre
solutions which changing this type of network equipment can often mean."
Cisco have also announced the EoL for their PGW range of softswitches and software, which saw Squire experience increased demand for their Media Gateway Controller, as Matt Watts, Squire's Marketing Manager, explains "Companies using the PGW are often concerned that they would have to replace more than just the Cisco PGW they are using.
Compatibility was a central issue during the SVI-MGC's product development, which is why our solution offers for interoperability with Cisco Media Gateways, meaning that it can be a direct replacement for the PGW with the rest of a company's infrastructure remaining in place. Cost savings are clearly a factor in taking this approach which is why we've found most success offering the SVI-MGC as a software solution, as this also reduces potential hardware costs."