Network upgrade strengthens voice quality for VoIP service provider

Monday, 03 May, 2010

As the leading Indonesian VoIP service provider, with an estimated market share of 60% in 2009, Gaharu Telecom Indonesia brings retail and wholesale VoIP to both consumers and corporate customers and also meets the demanding standards required for international carrier connections. Its Hallophone brand is known for its premium voice quality and customer service and in Indonesia customers ask for a Hallophone when they want to purchase a prepaid VoIP calling card.

To serve its nearly 200,000 prepaid and postpaid customers and manage a VoIP network that reaches the 10 most populous cities in Indonesia, Gaharu has had to meet the many challenges that come with explosive growth. Faced with an ageing network a few years ago, the company decided to bring in new technology that would help it keep its leadership position and continue to grow its business.

Several characteristics were important. One problem with the existing system was that it took up too much expensive rack space to deliver the density that Gaharu needed at that time - and would need in the future. Along with more capacity in a smaller footprint, the new equipment would have to handle SS7 because of the company’s termination business and single-stage international direct dialling (IDD), which required seamless connection to SS7-based cellular partners, such as XL and Telkomsel.

Also on the ‘must-have’ list was a platform that delivered a broad set of ready-to-use features, since its existing system provided only a very basic feature set. Partners were increasingly requiring very complex network designs, which could only be satisfied with equipment that provided a rich set of features in a single box. The company also had a uniform platform policy, which meant the new equipment would have to be able to handle additional points of presence (POPs) at a reasonable cost.

And, of course, the new equipment would have to provide field-proven, carrier-level reliability.

After an extensive search for new equipment for its network, Gaharu chose the Dialogic IMG 1010 integrated media gateway, a carrier-ready VoIP gateway that supports both media and signalling in a single chassis. Its robust features set allows Gaharu to add new telephony services and partners quickly and with confidence, and supports up to 768 gateway channels or up to 1024 IP channels in a 1U chassis.

The IMG 1010 delivers any-to-any voice network connectivity and can bring SIP services into legacy PRI, CAS and SS7 networks.

In addition, it offers border element functions, such as SIP mediation and IP-to-IP transcoding for network peering applications.

Its compact 1U high-density design, integrated SS7 termination across multiple gateways, GUI-based management and software licensing for in-service capacity expansion make the IMG 1010 an excellent option for Gaharu Telecom Indonesia’s VoIP business.

The IMG 1010 also features the Dialogic programmable protocol language, which allows rapid implementation of SS7 ISUP variants and other signalling changes, a feature which is very important for service providers that are expanding. By supporting SS7 signalling, call routing, call translation and IP transcoding in a single chassis, the IMG 1010 allows Gaharu Telecom Indonesia to reduce complexity and administrative overhead for VoIP services and perform on-the-fly voice coder conversion.

Its NEBS-3 carrier-grade design uses independent network interfaces to separate transport, signalling and OAM&P, allowing the IMG 1010 to provide high reliability and service availability for Gaharu. Because it works with load balancers, the IMG 1010 can also optimise the distribution of SIP traffic to further improve scalability and fault tolerance.

Although many factors have led to Gaharu Telecom Indonesia’s success, Sonny Hamdani, the company’s Chief Executive Officer, says: “The IMG 1010 gives us exactly what we need to be competitive.

“Its compact size has reduced our rack space rent considerably and our routine equipment replacement costs are lower because our old system equipment was very expensive and hard to get. We are also very relieved that we no longer have to worry when accepting more tier 1 traffic to Indonesia because of the excellent reliability we have experienced with the IMG 1010. And because of its flexible media processing and the wide variety of coders and packet sizes it supports, we can cater to many tier 1 standards. We do not have to reject any business because we are able to meet different carrier requirements easily now,” he commented.

The gateway’s ease of use is also important to Gaharu. “One of our key challenges,” says Hamdani, “is implementing our system without any unnecessary delay, and the IMG 1010 has proven to be very easy to get up and running quickly.”

Gaharu Telecom Indonesia now operates in all 10 of the largest cities in Indonesia (Jakarta, Bandung, Surabaya, Malang, Denpasar, Makassar, Solo, Medan, Palembang, and Semarang) and is the only Indonesian VoIP operator with POPs in all these cities, and each has an IMG 1010.

Overseas roaming with a prepaid card is available in Singapore, the USA and Canada, Australia, Malaysia, and Hong Kong, and Gaharu Telecom Indonesia is directly connected with the largest Indonesian cellular operators, including XL and Telkomsel, and is the only VoIP provider selling full national coverage to Telkomsel Mobile for voice termination other than Telkom. “We are now the largest licensed VoIP operator in Indonesia in terms of revenue, capacity and network size,” reports Hamdani.

As market leader, Gaharu Telecom Indonesia earns approximately US$15 million in revenue annually, “and we expect it to rise 50% with our new Telkomsel termination business,” explains Hamdani. “To grow this quickly and maintain our leadership reputation, we must have equipment of the high quality and reliability of the IMG 1010.” As to the future, Gaharu Telecom Indonesia is eyeing new opportunities. “The cost of internet service has dropped drastically in Indonesia,” reports Hamdani, “and we expect that providing SIP phone service will give us a new growth opportunity - and we already know that the IMG 1010 can support us in this type of service too.”

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