IMS Deployments Edging Up As Operators Ramp for VoLTE, Reaching US$4B by 2017

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IMS Core Network deployments are edging up as operators put the necessary infrastructure and capacity in place for planned 2014 VoLTE launches according to ABI Research.

Spending for the core network products (HSS, CSC, Media Controllers and Gateways, MSF, IBCF, SBC and P-CSCF) integral to a functioning IMS network will reach US$ 4 billion by 2017.

"We see increasing IMS Core Network revenues through 2017," comments Joe Hoffman, Research Director, "after which IMS revenues will flatten and reflect capacity expansion."

IMS spending for mobile 4G markets follows the LTE deployments, as operators seek to get their network coverage in place, stabilized, and compatible mobiles for VoLTE become available. The leading LTE market, North America, will peak 2015 to 2016, while the largest market, Asia-Pacific shows continued growth into the foreseeable future. Virtualization will be widespread since much of the IMS solution is delivered on x86 architecture and works on bare metal or virtualized platforms.

While the IMS driver is clearly VoLTE, operators will also find competitive advantage with a standardized, network-integrated solution that can also deliver superior user experience for WebRTC and OTT services under network congestion.

"Many operators will take a wait-and-see attitude as they already have 3G and CSFB for voice," continues Hoffman, "but they will quickly comprehend the monetization advantage with 4G and Voice, and adjust their strategies." Simply put, the whole world is moving to all-IP, and 4G / IMS / VoLTE is the standard migration path for Telecom.

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