News Release

Cisco and Illuminet Team to Deliver SS7 Solution for Advanced IP Network Access

Cisco's Signaling Controller 2200 Also Receives China
Feb 22, 1999

Cisco's Signaling Controller 2200 Also Receives China Certification andCompletes Bellcore Testing and Analysis

SAN JOSE, Calif. -- February 22, 1999 -- Cisco Systems, Inc. and Illuminet, the largest independent provider of SS7 and Intelligent Network services in North America, today announced that their products and services work together to give telecommunications service providers a complete SS7 internetworking solution. This solution allows service providers to reduce capital investment, lower operations costs and scale their networks more cost effectively.

Using the Cisco SC2200 Signaling Controller and Illuminet's network, service providers can now use Common Channel Signaling System 7 (SS7) to offload data from voice switches for Internet access. SS7 is the signaling protocol used to set up telephone calls and manage and control the public switched telephone network (PSTN). The SC2200 works with Cisco AS5800, AS5300, AS5200 or Access Path access servers to create an Internet access point of presence (POP) that looks like a switch in the telephone network. This peer-level POP can then be connected to Illuminet's nationwide SS7 network.

Cisco's and Illuminet's complementary SS7 products and services give service providers a complete solution for delivering Internet services without deploying additional legacy circuit switching equipment, thus reducing capital investment requirements. The Cisco/Illuminet SS7 solution also lets service providers build a nationally distributed network using a single SS7 interconnect point. This enables them to scale their networks more cost effectively and reduces operations costs. And by deploying SS7 trunks instead of more expensive ISDN/PRI trunks, service providers benefit from reduced operations costs, increased scalability and lower interconnect tariffs.

"By joining forces with Illuminet, we're helping carriers and service providers move into the New World where a multiservice network infrastructure will carry both voice and data traffic," said Roland Acra, vice president and general manager for Cisco Systems' Dial Access Business Unit. "We're delivering network architectures of the future today."

"Illuminet is dedicated to providing reliable SS7 and Intelligent Network services for all carriers and service providers, including those utilizing IP technologies," said Bob Wienski, director and general manager of Intelligent Network Services for Illuminet. "Cisco's and Illuminet's products and services are available now - not in a test environment or in the future - to give carriers an effective method of lowering costs and alleviating voice network congestion caused by data traffic."

To ensure the interoperability of their complementary products and services, Illuminet and Cisco successfully completed SS7 link control and network (Level 2 and 3) testing for Cisco's SC2200 SS7-Internet Protocol (IP) gateway. The set of Level 2 and 3 tests used is the industry standard test suite for interoperability recommended by the Alliance for Telecommunications Industry Solutions' Network Operations Forum.

Cisco's SS7 internetworking equipment also recently received interoperability certification from Guangdong Post and Telecom Academy (GPTA) of Science and Technology in the People's Republic of China and completed Bellcore conformance analysis.

GPTA Certification

In the People's Republic of China, the Guangdong Post and Telecom Academy (GPTA) of Science and Technology certified Cisco's SS7 dial access solution for compatibility with China's SS7 standards. With more than 10 million telephone subscribers, three million mobile phone users and 16,000 Internet users, the GPTA administration is adopting Cisco's products to meet the increasing demand for Internet access.

"The post and telecommunications administrations throughout China are turning to SS7 interconnect as a scalable and cost-effective way to handle the rapidly growing demand for Internet access," said Ke-Jun Liu, director of Guangdong Post and Telecom Academy of Science and Technology. "With Academy certification, the administrations can now use Cisco's SS7 solution to provide services with this new technology."

Bellcore Testing and Analysis

Cisco's Internet offload solution recently completed Bellcore's SS7 conformance testing and analysis. A report that describes the results of Bellcore's SS7 analysis of Release 2.8 of the Cisco SC2200 was released this month and may be obtained by contacting Cisco.

Bellcore's conformance analysis program provides an objective, experienced, third-party assessment of the compatibility of an equipment supplier's SS7 implementation with relevant industry standards and requirements. The conformance analysis helps increase customer confidence in the supplier's product and facilitates deployment of the equipment.

"SS7 is critical to both existing and emerging telecommunications networks and it plays a vital role in solutions that offload Internet traffic from the public switched telephone network," said Richard Ferrise, general manager of Bellcore's Switching and Signaling Analysis Services. "A primary objective of our analysis program is to work with suppliers, like Cisco, to help them identify potential problems and their impact. Suppliers can then use this information to deliver a higher-quality product to their customers."

About Illuminet

Illuminet provides advanced signaling network technology and enhanced applications, including local number portability, wireless fraud management, SS7 network usage measurement and billing services to more than 1,000 local interexchange and wireless telecommunications providers throughout North America and in parts of Asia.

Cisco Systems

Cisco Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ:CSCO) is the worldwide leader in networking for the Internet.

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