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(1) (Soft-Switch) Earlier software from Soft-Switch, Inc. that converted email messages from one protocol to another using X.400 as a common base. Running on IBM mainframes and Data General minicomputers, Soft-Switch, Inc. became a division of Lotus in 1995. See X.400.

(2) A programmable switch that processes the signaling for packet-based telephony protocols. Also known as a "media gateway controller," "call agent" or "call server," telephony providers use softswitches to integrate PSTN signaling (SS7) with VoIP. Using network processors at its core, softswitches can support IP, DSL, ATM and frame relay transports in the same unit. The softswitch's programmability enables it to adapt to future protocols. See IP telephony, VoIP and SIP.

It Should Be Able To...
According to the International Softswitch Consortium, a softswitch should be able to (1) control connection services for a media gateway and/or native IP endpoints, (2) select processes that can be applied to a call, (3) provide routing for a call within the network based on signaling and customer database information, (4) transfer control of the call to another network element, and (5) interface to and support management functions such as provisioning and billing.

Softswitch Infrastructure
This shows how a softswitch fits into the integrated SS7 and VoIP worlds. (Illustration assistance courtesy of GNP Computers and
References in periodicals archive ?
TELECOMWORLDWIRE-August 8, 2011-Neutral Tandem adds voice soft-switch at Telehouse Docklands North(C)1994-2011 M2 COMMUNICATIONS http://www.
Interconnection services provider Neutral Tandem Inc (Nasdaq:TNDM) said today that it has expanded its global network with the deployment of a PSX voice soft-switch from Sonus Networks in the Telehouse Docklands North interconnection hub in London.
Bourne brings to VoEX 10 years' experience in network design and development, first with Thomson Consumer Electronics and more recently as senior vice president for VoIP and soft-switch Access Management engineering at Level 3 Communications.
The GR8 platform uses patented MOSFET soft-switch charging technology which provides cleaner, more efficient power for improved control, diagnostics, and power supply functions.
Leading technology companies presented their products in a side-by-side comparison on the exhibit floor during IDC's IMS technology shoot out and Technology Assurance Labs soft-switch shoot out.
WASHINGTON -- To help TelecomNEXT attendees make the right investment decisions as the telecom industry expands to provide consumers with voice, data, and video services over IP networks, leading independent testing group Technology Assurance Labs will host a next-generation soft-switch technology "Shoot Out" on the TelecomNEXT exhibit floor.
GCI will be providing Internet Protocol soft-switch, billing software and technical engineering support for the system.
of Mexico for Airspan's first delivery of a complete end-to-end network solution combining broadband wireless and soft-switch and gateway capability.
With the continued success of our network buildout, UNE-P to UNE-L migrations and our soft-switch tests in the Grand Rapids area, we are excited to reopen markets where Talk America has had historical marketing success and we have the opportunity to serve business customers.
Under the agreement, Celtel, with operations in 13 countries, will install Ericsson's Mobile Soft-switch solution, capable of carrying large and growing volumes of voice and data traffic in a state of the art, cost optimized 3GPP R4 compliant network architecture.
The OASIS soft-switch will be implemented with SS7 signalling connectivity initially but the system already supports VoIP so allowing Guernsey to upgrade to VoIP for services in the future.
The Virtual Service Provider platform provides real time billing capabilities and a secure back-end environment to manage our customer base via access to a partitioned soft-switch solution hosted by VOIP Solutions Inc.