Class 4 or Class 5: Which Switch is Which?

Class 4 or Class 5 Switching: Which switch is which?A softswitch is a vital part of your VoIP business.  But what is the difference between a Class 4 and a Class 5 softswitch?

Class 5 softswitch enables you to provide many popular VoIP services to your retail customers, such as Hosted PBX and other VoIP services used by business and residential end users.  A Class 5 softswitch provides the type of features that end users need every day such as dial tone, call waiting, call forwarding, transferring calls, and a wide variety of PBX features for businesses.  Some Class 5 softswitch features may have been premium add-on services when they were first introduced, but now are considered prerequisites for doing business.  If you take a closer look, you will notice that the more popular features aim to increase a service provider’s call completion rates.  For example, call waiting and three-way calling enable call completions which otherwise may not have been possible.

VoIP providers use Class 4 softswitches to buy and sell VoIP Termination on a wholesale basis.  This means that the traffic flows “switch to switch” and “service provider to service provider” rather than to end users.  Wholesalers usually handle much higher traffic volumes than retail traffic.  Class 4 softswitches enable wholesale providers to buy large numbers of minutes from an upstream supplier, and then distribute those minutes to their customers in smaller increments.

Because VoIP prices are often volume-based, the wholesale provider makes money by buying in bulk, adding a fraction of a penny to each minute, then selling in smaller volumes to its own downstream customers.  Wholesale means lower margins on higher volumes, while retailers may charge significantly higher rates per minute to end users.

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Telinta’s award-winning TeliCoreTM platform is both a Class 4 and Class 5 softswitch.  Whether your business model includes wholesale services, retail services (or both!) Telinta can help you.  Our carrier-grade softswitch integrates Telinta’s cutting-edge switching and billing capabilities.

You and your resellers can easily offer services like Hosted PBX, SIP Trunking, Business and Residential VoIP, Mobile Solutions, WebRTC, Audio-Conferencing, Calling Card and Pinless, Wholesale VoIP, and more.

Want to learn more? Contact us today.