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Metaswitch Eyes VoLTE With OpenCloud Buy

Carol Wilson

Metaswitch today expanded its reach into the mobile market and the applications realm with its acquisition of OpenCloud, an application server company providing mostly real-time charging services to 60 mobile operators. (See Metaswitch Buys OpenCloud.)

The acquisition, the terms of which were not announced, boosts Metaswitch immediately in the rapidly growing voice-over-LTE (VoLTE) market as a pure software play, by adding the OpenCloud Rhino Telecom Application Server (TAS) to its virtualized Clearwater IMS core and Perimeta session border controller (SBC).

The two companies have been working together and taking a "best-of-breed" approach to joint customers for a few years now, says Ian Maclean, chief marketing officer for Metaswitch. "We have, we think, a unique and compelling cloud-native solution for the IMS core, and they really have been focused on enabling mobile services and have a terrific telephony application server as well as a service broker. "

Together, the solutions can help mobile operators both migrate subscribers over to VoLTE and have an open software platform on which they can create innovative services that help boost revenue, he says.

The Rhino TAS features a set of application programming interfaces and software development kits in its RhinoMarket to let network operators and developer partners build new services. That combined with the Metaswitch open and programmable IMS platform would enable new service delivery across a variety of networks.

"For us, [the acquisition] was a logical next step in terms of committing to deliver that end-to-end solution to our customers -- the acquisition made sense," Maclean says in an interview.

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The deal gets Metaswitch very quickly into the mobile marketplace in EMEA and APAC with 60 customers divided between those markets that have collectively launched 125 new services using the OpenCloud platform, Maclean says.

"A lot of them have to do with charging services, friends and family kinds of services, closed user groups services, things like that," he says. "They've got different flavors of these services that are commercially launched. That is the value proposition we plan to bring to the VoLTE market worldwide."

One area of expansion would be into business services and mobile VPNs, Maclean says, adding that Metaswitch will specifically target mobile unified communications, which today suffers from a lack of quality of service guarantees.

OpenCloud raised more than $30 million from VCs, Nokia and in debt financing since 2007. (See OpenCloud Banks £5M.)

— Carol Wilson, Editor-at-Large, Light Reading

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