With the communications market in a steady expansion mode despite the overall hostility of the current economy, it's worth examining the basis of such a market. And in this cases, what seems to be driving large portions of the communications market is a technology known as SIP, or Session Initiation Protocol (News - Alert).
SIP is a protocol geared toward controlling large portions of the standard communications product line. Everything from VoIP to voice and video calling has at least some contact with SIP on some level, and even most Unified Communications (News - Alert) tools come into contact with SIP on some level, as SIP not only allows for the control of these tools, but does so in a fashion that's flexible, interoperable among platforms, and provides maximum choice for the users and developers alike. With SIP in play, any device that uses IP as a tool for its communications features can easily connect with another with a minimum of difficulty.
SIP can be used for both unicast and multicast sessions alike, making it useful for everything from a one-on-one conversation to a full conference call, and can even work with multiple media types, which is a necessity in terms of video calling as it requires both the transmission of video and audio. Users can also easily initiate contact with minimal regard for their location, as long as said location has access to a connection of some type, and can use the various functions on the devices they're using with few to no issues, allowing for maximum interoperability between devices.
Combining all these dissimilar facets together illustrates nicely why SIP is the current standard--if for no other reason than most developers are already using it--in terms of UC applications. The sheer flexibility of it, and its comparatively device-agnostic attitude, make it a good fit with most any system, and a device that operates on a system in which it can easily work with other devices makes it a good choice by anyone's standards. Thus, many believe that SIP is going to remain the primary driver of communications technology for the foreseeable future.
Admittedly, SIP is not without its flaws. It's built mainly for simplicity and its ability to work with other devices. This flexibility makes it somewhat susceptible to security breaches, and accompanying cyber-attacks like DoS attacks, which is something that network administrators need to keep in mind. And as flexible and simple as SIP is, actually putting an SIP solution in play in the first place can be time- and resource-consuming, which is an important factor in any operation that's watching its budget closely.
Still, considering the potential savings involved with adding SIP trunking--with a sufficiently robust IP network, savings can represent 50-60 percent over current costs, and even without the robust IP network savings can still add up to 20-30 percent depending on certain conditions--the added resources and security concerns can be endured.
SIP may not be perfect, but there's a lot going for it, and with this many advantages--and comparatively few issues--related to it, it's safe to see why many think SIP will remain the leader in communications technology bases for some time.
Edited by Juliana Kenny