Acme Packet targets increase in IP services with 40Gbps Session Border Controller


Acme Packet has announced a major upgrade to its Session Border Controller (SBC) portfolio, with the launch of the Net-Net 6300 appliance. Acme Packet said that its latest product addresses two key developing operator requirements in the sector – for increased throughputs and capacities driven by certain applications and for flexibility of architecture and deployment in the network.

The SBC product sector addresses the need for operators to be able to maintain session control of IP services as they cross network borders - something that it is forecast to increase as operators roll out more IMS and SIP-based services such as VoLTE, video calling, RCS, unified communications and other IP and OTT services. 

That requires signalling processing, media handling, codec transcoding and encryption.  For instance, VoLTE will require HD voice transcoding between wideband to narrowband voice codecs.

The 6300 boost system throughput from the 5Gbps on offer from Acme Packet’s previous product, the Net-Net 4500 to 40Gbps. Acme Packet said that that means it can handle to 200,000 signalled sessions, 80,000 media sessions, and 1,000,000 subscribers simultaneously.

The system is built on 64-bit symmetrical multiprocessing capabilities and an Intel quad-core CPU design that Acme claimed can deliver more than twice the signalling performance of comparable SBC platforms.

“The system hardware in the 4500 constrained the transcoding and encryption capacity,” Jonathan Zarkower, Director of Product Marketing, Acme Packet, said. The new product offers a dedicated processor per interface taking advantage of a quad core main board that occupies considerably less space in the appliance.

Acme Packet’s competitors in this area include Alcatel Lucent, Metaswitch and Genband, as well as Huawei and Sonus.

“Most of what we see competitively is either in big iron platforms, or in COTS servers that are expensive to maintain and operate, because of their increased power consumption, cooling etc.” Zarkower said. The 6300’s 3u design saves operators from the |”sheet metal garages” they require by leveraging COTS hardware for ATCA and chassis-based platforms, he added.

Genband, Sonus and Metaswitch offer appliances-based solutions, but with reduced capacities and throughputs, compared to the 6300, Zarkower said.

* Disclosure. Acme Packet has asked us to take down two pictures we had of their own competitive analysis - saying the slides are confidential. The slides showed comparisons between the 6300 and solutions from Genband, Huawei, Metaswitch, Ericsson, Alcatel-Lucent and Sonus.