SOURCE: IMS Forum

February 03, 2009 10:14 ET

The NGN IMS Forum Announces Plugfest 6 Results -- the Largest Heterogeneous IMS Network Ever Tested Spanning Four Continents

Attains "Real IMS" Status and Other Milestones

DENVER, CO--(Marketwire - February 3, 2009) - The NGN/IMS Forum, the only industry association dedicated to interoperability and certification of IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS) and Next Generation Networks (NGN) applications and services, announced today the results of its sixth Plugfest. Plugfest 6, which took place January 12-16, 2009 at the InterOperability Lab (UNH IOL) in Durham, NH, has marked a number of important milestones for the IMS NGN Forum members and for the industry at large. The interoperability testing confirmed the transition to what analysts call the "Real IMS," a phase which demonstrates policy control, charging and the wide support of IP applications. Plugfest 6 simulated two different IMS operator networks across 4 continents.

"The sixth IMS/NGN Plugfest took place exactly two years after the historical first IMS Plugfest," said Michael Khalilian, Chairman and President, NGN and IMS Forum. "We are very proud of our members and participants, since no other group has completed six tests of IMS and NGN interoperability. And if this is not enough, we did it in a short two years' time. In Plugfest 6 we built the largest heterogeneous IMS network ever tested. We are now planning two additional Plugfests for 2009 as we continue to move the industry closer to the promise of fully converged networks."

Plugfest 6 simulated two different IMS operator networks across 4 continents. Inexbee tested Remote user equipment (UE) from France; Radvision IMS stacks from Israel, and HP tested charging/billing, ease of deployment and OEM interoperability from China. NTT-AT tested IMS UE at the IOT location in New Hampshire, where most of the other network components were hosted. A major achievement by the industry was shown in the short setup time of only a day and half that it took to bring into operations these complex networks supporting up to 250,000 user sessions. User equipment, application servers, service creation and robustness were tested

"Consumers expect a uniform messaging experience -- regardless of the underlying messaging or network technology," said Mr. Anantha Ramu, Vice President of Engineering & Principal Architect at Acision. "Therefore, IMS interoperability between various products, networks and implementations can provide a competitive advantage to operators. By participating in the IMS/NGN Forum's Plugfest 6, Acision successfully validated the interoperability of its application server in a heterogeneous IMS network testing environment."

According to Thomas Maufer, Mu Dynamics' Director of Technical Marketing, "IMS Forum participants found it very satisfying to test a complete multi-domain IMS system for the first time at IMS Forum's Plugfest 6, including multiple geographies, showing back-end systems and multiple protocols like SIP and Diameter. Our experience in expanding the Mu analyzer's IMS testing capabilities also contributed to growing the reliability and security of products and services at IMS Plugfests -- as well as the continued maturity of IMS going forward."

Tests included interoperability testing between two operators' networks using IMS/NGN services end-to-end, charging scenarios, VoIP and video-over-IP and a demonstration of pico-cell access. Equipment vendors also showed compatibility across multi-vendor networks and UE, as they tested interoperability for Diameter and SIP interfaces, charging interfaces, policy, application servers, and element and network robustness testing. With labs connected across the world, Plugfest 6 participants demonstrated how IMS/NGN deployments work seamlessly cross-geography (US, Asia, Middle East, Europe).

The IMS Plugfest included the testing of complex call flows involving multi-party and multi-CSCF in both single domain, inter and multi-domain configurations, including roaming scenarios. On the authorization/authentication side, the tests encompassed several user authentication methods and AS-HSS user profile manipulation. On-line and off-line billing scenarios demonstrated clearly that NGN services are ready for deployment.

Participants in this Plugfest included a cross-section of the IMS and NGN industry, in a clear example of the global reach of NGN and IMS service and network delivery with companies from France, Germany, India, Israel, China, Japan, and the United States joining together in this event. Participating vendors and service providers included:

  -- Acision              -- Radvision
  -- HP                   -- Sonus Networks
  -- Inexbee              -- Starent Networks
  -- Marben-Products      -- Tekelec
  -- Mu Dynamics          -- UNH-IOL
  -- NTT-AT

About the NGN and IMS Forums™

The NGN/IMS Forum is the only global telecommunications association devoted to Next Generation Network (NGN) service delivery and interoperable IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS) services architectures and solutions.

The Forum's mission is to accelerate the interoperability of IMS and NGN services and to enable enterprise and residential consumers to benefit fully from the delivery of M-play™: rich multimedia, mobility and fixed services over wireline, cable, GSM, UMTS, Wi-Fi, WiMAX, LTE and fiber broadband networks. The Forum is the creator and organizer of the IMS Plugfests™ and NGN Plugfests™, the industry's only events focused on verification and certification of IMS and NGN service interoperability through the IMS Certified™ and NGN Certified™ programs.

Through organized Plugfests, technical working groups and other activities, Forum members develop cost-effective technical frameworks for revenue generating converged IP NGN solutions. The combined organizations include over 2,500 executives and technical, business development and marketing professionals from global and emerging equipment vendors, solution providers, integrators, service providers, and governmental agencies.

For additional information or to join the NGN Forum, the IMS Plugfest, and/or the NGN Plugfest, please visit www.IMSforum.org or www.NGNforum.org.

Contact Information

  • For Further Information contact:

    NGN/IMS Forum Media Relations
    Cathy Clarke
    CNC Associates
    +1 (508) 833-8533
    pr@imsforum.org