The role of the Media Server
For many years IP media servers have been used in telecommunication solutions to process audio and video services. This applies for enterprise as well as network operator applications.
Typically, IP media servers have been used to playback prompts, detect DTMF, transcode, build voice mails or interactive voice responses (IVR).
In today’s digital world, the functionalities of media servers can be offered as services from the cloud. This has a number of benefits, which are described further down in this blog. But, in addition to that, IP media services also open up for new and innovative use cases. Examples of use cases where the functionality of media services are needed are:
- WebRTC applications
- Cloud PBX
- Interactive Voice Response (IVR)
- Voicemail services
- Scalable notification services
- Contact center applications
IP Media Servers reaching end of life (EoL)
Although the shift to cloud technology has been going on for a long time, many applications in service today rely on hardware-based solutions with server racks holding media cards. These solutions have been working with high reliability over several years, especially in contact centers.
Many of these hardware-based solutions have now reached end-of-life and are no longer supported. Spares are only accessible through the second-hand market and force solution providers and contact centers to search for new technology options.
The question is how to leapfrog technology and move to a modern solution that provides the values of the cloud?
Are software-based servers the salvation?
Software-based IP Media Servers, deployed in the cloud, have typically been touted as the replacement alternative to hardware-based IP Media Servers. Is this really the most modern way today?
Although deployed in the cloud, software-based solutions with a monolithic design still takes 6-12 months to release new features. And complex software-models are typically designed for peak traffic and not for actual usage, something which impacts the commercial model too, making a pay-for-what-you-use model hard to use. The monolithic design also makes it difficult for developers to fully understand the software structure, and faulty code in the monolith might create problems for the entire application.
I would argue that in a world moving to the cloud and using open APIs, solution providers and contact centers should not rely on monolithic-designed software solutions even though they are deployed in the cloud. It is for sure a significant improvement from hardware-based IP Media Servers, but when it’s time for the change, make sure to move to the latest technology available.
From servers to services
Today IP Media Server functionality can be consumed straight from the cloud with unlimited scalability in terms of size and market, and with a commercial model that let you pay for what you use. This is far more future proof than a monolithic-designed solution.
Modern APIs and a microservice-based software architecture allow you to quickly embed new functionality into your solution. The boundaries that heavily limits the flexibility of a monolithic software solution are removed and replaced with the endless possibilities that an API-based solution offers. Furthermore, if the APIs offer a wide range of endpoint options, the freedom to build and tailor make solutions for demanding use cases are endless.
A cloud-native service is naturally built on a serverless backend architecture, allowing your business to scale effortlessly step by step. Only the actual usage – not peak traffic or concurrent calls – should be paid for.
The benefits of modern cloud service-based solutions compared to hardware-based or monolithic software solutions are:
iotcomms.io’s mediaservice API
iotcomms.io’s innovative mediaservice API is part of our cloud-native communications platform, and provides the benefits described above. It is the ultimate API bringing the high granularity needed for demanding use cases.
Included in our mediaservice API is the call control functionalities needed for application developers to build their own logic. The customers’ application logic defines how calls should be handled, greeted or routed and our mediaservice API use functionalities such as answer, initiate, split, hang-up and route to execute what’s defined.
Below illustration shows how the iotcomms.io mediaservice API interacts with the customer application and the participants in a call.
The iotcomms.io mediaservice API offers numerous endpoints giving a unique level of flexibility and freedom to meet high demand use cases and ultimately grow customer experience.
Do you want to build modern audio & video services the flexible, cost efficient and speedy way?
Dive into the technical details
- Read the getting started documentation to capture the full potential of our Media Services
- Continue by exploring the mediaservice API to understand its endless flexibility!
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