Leveraging Session Border Controllers (SBCs) with Skype for Business Enterprise Voice

The Session Border Controller (SBC) is a device that provides a host of security, service enablement, and control functions for any VoIP or Unified Communications (UC) network. Enterprises use SBCs for all sorts of UC network deployments, as do service providers. The SBC — which Microsoft recommends be included in a Skype for Businuess Enterprise Voice deployment to ensure interoperability and functionality — sits at the border between the internal Skype for Businuess Enterprise Voice network and the SIP Trunk service provided by the Internet service provider (ISP) or a legacy Internet protocol (IP) telephony infrastructure.

In a Skype for Businuess Enterprise Voice UC deployment, the SBC plays several key roles.

Enable Network Interworking

SBCs are really good at playing the role of intermediary between the Skype for Businuess servers and a SIP trunking provider. The SBC's ability to normalise SIP and to transcode and transrate media makes it the perfect go-between in any sort of VoIP network deployment.

Exceptional Transcoding Performance

Often voice calls aren't in the same codec, such as when in languages a translator or in UC a transcoder is needed to convert between the two. The Sonus SBC platform has a separate processing architecture of media transcoding and transrating, so the overall performance of the SBC doesn't take a "hit" when a lot of processor-intensive transcoding is going on. Whatever the transcoding load, the encryption/security and the routing modules are unaffected. Additionally, this functionally separated architecture makes it easier and less expensive to add more processing power for a specific function without requiring the enterprise or service provider to upgrade other parts of the SBC that are adequately provisioned.

Wide-Ranging Media Support

Sonus SBCs provide a wide range of support for different media types because they don't rely on off-the-shelf solutions for media processing. Instead, Sonus creates its own firmware, which allows Sonus to responsively add additional media types as needed, without waiting for a vendor to come along with a solution.