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VoIP Drives Softswitch Boom

The booming softswitch (software switches) market should continue its rapid growth rate through 2008, as major telecom-service providers show no slowdown in their appetites for the technology, according to a new study.

In-Stat/MDR predicts the softswitch-compliant market will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 65 percent to 2008, when sales will hit $2.05 billion.

The high-tech market-research firm said 2003 was a breakout year for softswitch technology, when sales expanded by 42.4 percent. Softswitches are advanced platforms that support a wide range of features in a single box. In a statement, In-Stat said it "expects this market to maintain high growth rates over the next several years as major service providers worldwide expand their VoIP networks."

Norm Bogen, an In-Stat research director, said wireline providers will account for the majority of softswitch purchases, although there is a trend toward a rising demand for softswitched networks by wireless and cable providers.

As telecommunications traffic increases over cable, landline, and wireless architectures, many service providers are reaching the limits of their switching capacity. Increasingly, traffic is being driven towards packet technology, which in turn is driving increased sales of softswitches.

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