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SIP Goes Peer-to-Peer

Word is emerging about a new peer-to-peer (P2P) version of the Session Initiation Protocol (SIP), the IETF's VoIP standard. A prototype has already been developed at Columbia University, where SIP was first born. Simultaneously, leading SIP luminaries such as Robert Sparks, CTO of Xten Networks and co-chair of the SIMPLE Working Group; Adam Roach, consultant and co-chair of the Centralized Conferencing (XCON) Working Group; and Cullen Jennings, a distinguished engineer with Cisco Systems' Voice Technology Group, are said to be concocting a similar P2P SIP protocol.

This new technology would give enterprises the benefits of P2P protocols, which reduce implementation costs and setup time because they require little to no infrastructure. By distributing the core networking technology to the client, P2P protocols also make IT far less dependent on VoIP service providers to interconnect the office. Finally, expect P2P SIP to leverage SIP's already-strong installed base.