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SIP Forum and i3 Forum Partner to Promote Interoperability of SIP-based Carrier Services

Initial cooperation of leading technology industry associations to address global Fax over IP challenges

NORTH ANDOVER, MA (May 19, 2010) – Leading technology industry associations the SIP Forum and the i3 Forum have joined forces to help spur the interoperability of SIP-based carrier services, including Fax-over-Internet-Protocol (FoIP) interoperability on a global basis. The two organizations have been collaborating and will continue to collaborate on a number of initiatives to resolve deployment and interoperability challenges posed by next-generation fax communications while bringing equipment vendors and service providers together in the process.

“The interoperability of fax-over-IP has been a priority for the SIP Forum for some time, and the i3 Forum has had a similar focus,” said Richard Shockey, SIP Forum Chairman of the Board. “The partnership is a natural one and we expect it to yield tangible results in the near future as FoIP becomes a universally deployed telecom application in next-generation IP-based networks.”

The partnership brings two premier organizations tasked with similar missions – to accelerate the deployment of IP-based communications worldwide – but with different stakeholder communities. The SIP Forum features a broad membership of primarily telecom applications, services, and infrastructure vendors, as well as a growing list of US-based cable operators and service providers. The i3 Forum’s global membership focuses on international service providers.

“A key objective of this partnership is to create a global coalition of stakeholders in the telecom community – operators, researchers, engineers and equipment vendors – and work together to better address FoIP technology issues in order to speed its deployment in IP network environments” said Philippe Millet, Chairman i3 Forum. “Collectively we will work to develop concrete proposals and recommended solutions.”

As done since last January, the SIP Forum leadership and its FoIP Task Group will continue working with i3 Forum membership committees on joint technical initiatives pertaining to FoIP. Collectively, the two groups will address key interoperability issues pertaining to the deployment of fax services, specifically ITU-T T.38, in SIP-based networks. The challenges surrounding IP-based fax and the use of T.38 make it difficult for users to determine if T.38 can or will work reliably and thus offer a viable alternative to traditional TDM-based fax transport.

The SIP Forum’s FoIP Task Group, first launched in late 2008 to address the technical and interoperability challenges involving the transmission of fax documents over a SIP-enabled network, outlined these issues in the fall of 2009 in its FoIP Problem Statement v.1.0, and more recently with the publication of the T.38 SIP-SDP Problem Statement.

The FoIP Task Group leadership includes Mike Coffee, CEO of Commetrex, and Gonzalo Salgueiro of Cisco, who serve as Task Group Co-Chairs; Max Schroeder, Sr. VP. Faxcore, who serves as the Task Group Whip; and document editors including Michael Chen, LSI Corporation; and Kevin P. Fleming, Director of Software Technologies, Digium, Inc..

Active FoIP Task Group participants include representatives from companies including Alcatel-Lucent, AEMcom, AT&T, AudioCodes, Biscom, Cox Communications, Dialogic Corporation, Digium Inc., C4U Solutions, Cisco Systems, Inc., Commetrex Corporation, Comunycarse, DevFoundry Software, emFAST, Faxback Inc, Faxcore, Lexmark, LSI Corporation, NeuStar Inc, Nortel, Omnitor, Opentext, Orange, Packetizer, Sagem-Interstar Inc., Samsung, Siemens Enterprise Communications Group, Sonus Networks, Telecom Poland, and Teridian Semiconductor Corp.

With more than 37 telecommunications carriers/operators in 80 countries, the i3 Forum is focused on collaborating with the worldwide communications community to expedite the transition of voice and related communications services to ones based on Internet Protocol (IP). Within i3 Forum, the WorkStream “Technical Aspects” Working Group plans to deliver in October, following the outcome of the July, 2010 ITU-T SG16 meeting, a document devoted to addressing the specification guidelines for fax gateways together with the recommended test suites.

About the SIP Forum

The SIP Forum is an IP communications industry association that engages in numerous activities that promote and advance SIP-based technology, such as the development of industry recommendations, the SIPit interoperability and testing events, special interoperability workshops, educational seminars, special interest groups, and general promotion of SIP in the industry. One of the Forum’s notable technical activities is the development of the SIPconnect Technical Recommendation – a standards-based recommendation that provides detailed guidelines for direct IP peering and interoperability between IP PBXs and VoIP service provider networks. The SIPconnect Compliant Certification Program is an associated program through which eligible companies can gain SIPconnect validation and the right to license the use of the SIP Forum’s ‘SIPconnect Compliant’ certification mark – the official brand of the leading standard for SIP Trunking products and services. Other important Forum initiatives include work in Fax-over-IP interoperability, User Agent Configuration, and the opportunities for SIP in Smart Grid deployments. For more information, please visit:

About the i3 Forum

The i3 Forum brings together the communications expertise of more than 37 telecommunications operators representing a combined retail base in excess of one billion customers in over 80 countries. The goal of the i3 Forum is to develop collaborative recommendations for an industry-wide transition of voice and related services to Internet Protocol (IP). The forum’s unified effort to expedite global IP-based voice implementation will enhance worldwide communication by supporting widespread access to innovative and high quality IP-based services and applications. For more information, please visit:

For further information, please contact:

John Gates
Elevate Communications
(617) 861-3651

Marc Robins
President and Managing Director, SIP Forum

Alessandro Forcina
Chairman WS “Technical Aspects”, i3 Forum
Telecom Italia Sparkle
+39-06-5274 4054

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