[Kamailio-Users] prepaid system

Luciano Afranllie listas.luafran at gmail.com
Tue Dec 30 15:18:13 CET 2008

I totally agree with you.

But the reality, at least in Argentina, is prepaid model is very
successful because major operators don't have good flat rate options.
And where the flat rate option is available, that is small communities
(telco cooperatives) which are using VoIP, most of the call DO
terminate in the PSTN or PLMN. This should be also the case in other
parts of the world, that is why my interest.

And my initiative was not to build or design a full blown prepaid
system but to share ideas and experiences about how open source
software spread over there was used together to accomplish the
objective of providing a prepaid solution.


On Tue, Dec 30, 2008 at 10:42 AM, Alex Balashov
<abalashov at evaristesys.com> wrote:
> It's a good thought.
> My concern is that from an economic perspective, coming up with any
> grand, unifying schemes or projects to solve these architectural
> challenges is mostly a pointless waste of time.
> While admittedly the prepaid model is proving to be quite a viable
> inroad in many parts of the world outside of the US and W. Europe (and
> indeed, much of the interest seems to be there), fundamentally it can
> only exist to the measure that:
> (1) Voice switching, transport and subscriber services are billed by
> per-minute usage, and voice infrastructure and service delivery systems
> are monetised this way;
> (2) The process of rebilling for usage is a derivative function of the
> economics of PSTN interconnection and how the PSTN TDM carrier-world
> business model works (a series of billable events and relatively fixed
> reservations of capacity) versus the Internet business model (primarily
> flat-rate peering and settlement-free peering among backbone haulers)
> that revolves around higher-order applications delivered over packets;
> (3) There are not too many flat-rate alternatives available elsewhere in
> the telecom world.
> I think #3 is the most important and the one that is likely to prove
> most relevant in the short term, as I think we can all agree that there
> is no expectation that the PSTN in a time frame anyone would deem short
> to immediate term.
> For example, here in the US, pre-paid calling cards are largely obsolete
> and highly irrelevant from a mass-market perspective.  They survive in
> various niches where people remain that are somehow sentimentally or
> inertially attached to calling cards and fixed-line long-distance;  this
> includes retirees, large communities of first-generation immigrants for
> whom this is a viable means of making calls to their home countries
> relatively inexpensively, and so on.  But really, by and large landline
> revenue is falling precipitously, everyone has a mobile, international
> rate plans are available for those who truly need to make a lot of
> international calls, and domestic long-distance is increasingly
> flat-rate / unlimited on fixed-line (and is already so on mobile).
> For the most part, people ordering origination (DIDs) in the form of
> wholesale trunking are interested in flat-rate DIDs as well.
> Termination will remain usage-based, but only so far as points #1 and #2
> above are highly operative, and only so long as private VoIP peering
> doesn't gain any serious traction.
> All these details can be debated at great length, but the salient point
> here is that this is a business model that is intimately bound up with
> the idiosyncrasies of the PSTN and the way the incumbent voice business
> has functioned for almost a century.
> It is fairly obvious, I think, that whenever it is that we do get around
> to moving beyond the PSTN, in part or in whole, the centrality and
> unassailable importance of "minutes" as a billing fixture will be
> expected to disappear in line with the ontology to which all other
> Internet-based application services are subject.  Meanwhile, the
> incumbent telco world will go increasingly to flat-rate and unlimited
> plans and there will be continuing downward cost pressure, as well as
> increasing local loop deregulation and unbundling in a variety of other
> national markets in which state incumbents persist with varying degrees
> of success.
> So, while this sort of stuff can probably make a decent amount of money
> in the US and Europe if appropriatedly positioned/marketed/specialised,
> and certainly can work in Latin America, the Middle East, etc., it does
> have the quality of being somewhat regressive and not particularly
> forward-thinking.  It is overly connected to a shifting and unstable
> landscape of arbitrage opportunities arising from the position of VoIP
> relative to the PSTN and wireless;  specifically, that most calls still
> terminate or transit the PSTN.
> That's why I think a large, consolidated open-source effort to build a
> highly complicated, robust prepaid service delivery platform from
> components like Kamailio/OpenSIPS is largely pointless.  Otherwise I
> would be the first to lend it my enthusiasm.
> Luciano Afranllie wrote:
>> On Tue, Dec 30, 2008 at 9:44 AM, Peter Lemenkov <lemenkov at gmail.com> wrote:
>>> Hello!
>>> 2008/12/29 Daniel-Constantin Mierla <miconda at gmail.com>:
>>>> Hello,
>>>> On 12/29/08 13:51, Peter Lemenkov wrote:
>>>>> [...]
>>>>> * At the time of user calls somewhere, we (after checking its auth
>>>>> data) rewrite its URI using custom plugin for OpenSER (which utilizes
>>>>> libsqlora8 library). It's not a rocket science, and (in simplified
>>>>> form) it looks like the following:
>>>> Is libsqlora8 working with latest API libs from Oracle?
>>> Yes. We use it in conjunction with Oracle 10g.
>>>> When I checked the project looked dead.
>>> I would say that libsqlora8 is finished :) - it works well and
>>> therefore doesn't need to be updated.
>>>> From 1.4 on, there is a dedicated driver for Oracle. Have you tried it? I
>>>> wonder what is the maturity of that module.
>>> No, we haven't tried yet.
>> I don't know if this has been discussed earlier but it would be nice
>> to point some key requirements for a system supporting prepaid users
>> and possible solutions to those requirements.
>> I think several of us is doing the same things so, we can benefit from
>> other experience and may be we can find a pattern (of course not
>> perfect and "fit all") for this problem using open source
>> alternatives.
>> I am talking about something like this:
>> - How to store and retrieve user category (postpaid, prepaid, etc).
>> LDAP, Radius, SER groups?
>> - Callflows
>> - What IVR to use for user notifications (no credit, etc) and user
>> balance check?
>> Asterisk, SEMS, etc?
>> - How to enforce call tear down when credit is exhausted?
>> What B2BUA to use?
>> - How to manage recharges?
>> Etc, etc.
>> Regards
>> Luciano
>> _______________________________________________
>> Users mailing list
>> Users at lists.kamailio.org
>> http://lists.kamailio.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/users
> --
> Alex Balashov
> Evariste Systems
> Web    : http://www.evaristesys.com/
> Tel    : (+1) (678) 954-0670
> Direct : (+1) (678) 954-0671
> Mobile : (+1) (678) 237-1775
> _______________________________________________
> Users mailing list
> Users at lists.kamailio.org
> http://lists.kamailio.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/users

More information about the Users mailing list