Is yours a Class 4 Softswitch or Class 5 Softswitch? Why can’t be a bit of both?

04 Nov 2016

For any VoIP business, softswitch forms a central component for accomplishing a variety of business operations. So, the significance attached to the selection of softswitch is very high. Depending upon the nature of your VoIP business, you many either opt a class 4 softswitch or class 5 softswitch. Wondering what is a class 4 or class 5 softswitch? Read on to understand the key differentiators between class 4 and class 5 softswitch.

Class 5 Softswitch for Retail VoIP Business

A class 5 softswitch is mostly used for retail VoIP business. It routes calls between end-users or customers in a relatively small areas such as cities, towns, states or even countries. For routing international VoIP calls, it simply passes on the traffic to class 4 softswitch.

Class 5 softswitch makes a perfect hosted IP PBX. It is used to connect phones and other devices with each other. Additionally, it enables end user features such as such as call waiting, call forwarding, caller ID, call transfer, auto attendant, e-911 and video conferencing support.

There are quite few ways by which end users utilize softswitch services. Usually, IP phones or phones with IP adapters are used by end users to connect directly to the softswitch. Another interesting way to tap softswitch services is through mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. Mobile dialer apps for different platforms can be installed on these devices which then acts as IP adapters allowing end users to tap the softswitch services.

For non-IP devices such as regular phones, class 5 softswitch provides services through PIN less and Calling Card services. End users have to dial into the local class 5 softswitch for utilizing the VoIP services.

Class 4 Softswitch for Wholesale VoIP Business

A class 4 softswitch is used for routing large volumes of VoIP traffic over long distances. Most service providers leverage the softswitch to route calls between various class 5 areas. Class 4 softswitch features advanced call routing and robust billing interface to cost-effectively route the traffic and bill the users accurately.

LCR (least cost routing) is one of the advanced call routing methods which guarantee high profit margins for service providers. Add to that, class 4 softswitch allows to filter the information by client, date and other parameters to generate reports about incoming and outgoing calls, call routing, traffic volume, etc. Therefore, it can be used by service providers for wholesale VoIP business.

Apart from class 4 and class 5 softswitch, service providers can also make use of hybrid softswitch that combines the potencies of both class 4 and class 5 softswitch. However, it is recommended to assess the nature of your VoIP business before going for hybrid softswitch as it is tad expensive.

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