Difference Between NGN and IMS


NGN (Next Generation Network) and IMS (IP Multimedia Systems) both are Platform Architectures used by Telecom Operators in their Network. NGN is an all IP Telecommunication Network capable of transporting and delivering multi services. IMS is a functional network architecture enables to deliver Multimedia services and capable of interoperate with almost any network to support network convergence.

What is NGN (Next Generation Network)

NGN is an all IP based network running on quality of services (QoS) enabled Traffic Engineered backbone network to deliver services like Voice, Fax, Video, Modem Calls, DTMF tones etc. Components of NGN may consists of Soft Switch, Media Gateway, Signalling Gateway, SBC (Session Border Controller) facilitated by QoS enabled IP/MPLS backbone. Some design of NGN consists of access network components like DSL Access Multiplexers (DSLAM) or Gateway connecting Fibre to home.

ITU Definition for NGN (Courtesy ITU)

A Next Generation Networks (NGN) is a packet-based network able to provide Telecommunication Services to users and able to make use of multiple broadband, QoS-enabled transport technologies and in which service-related functions are independent of the underlying transport-related technologies. It enables unfettered access for users to networks and to competing service providers and services of their choice. It supports generalised mobility which will allow consistent and ubiquitous provision of services to users. [ITU-T Recommendation Y.2001 (12/2004) – General overview of NGN]

What is IMS (IP Multimedia Systems)

IP Multimedia System is a functional architecture for multimedia service delivery over Internet Protocols. Earlier AIM of IMS is to merge Internet and Cellular network to deliver rich multimedia services. IMS was defined by 3GPP (3rd Generation Partnership Project). Later IMS was extended by European Telecommunication Standard Institute (ETSI) in the scope of work on NGN Architecture. Later Standardization body of ETSI, TISPAN (Telecommunications and Internet Converged Services and Protocols for Advanced Networking) standardized IMS as a subsystem of NGN.

Difference Between IMS Core and IMS

The core IMS is a TISPAN Vocabulary and IMS is a 3GPP Vocabulary mainly defined for Mobile Network Convergence towards IP. Core IMS or TISPAN IMS is mainly targeted for wired communications.