Nortel (NYSE:NT) and IBM (NYSE:IBM) have joined forces to launch a new service assurance solution designed for communication service providers that combines IBM Tivoli Netcool Carrier VoIP Manager software with network consulting and integration services from Nortel.

The new Service Assurance Solution provides greater visibility and control across multi-technology, multi-vendor networks, enabling service providers to better isolate and deal with performance issues, which lowers support costs and improves overall service. It includes operational consulting, network integration, customization and performance monitoring, which eliminates the need for hiring and training in-house service assurance staff.

"As customers use more video and other bandwidth-intensive applications, they become less tolerant of service degradation," Dietmar Wendt, president of Nortel's Global Services, said in a statement. "IBM and Nortel understand these challenges, and we have combined our strengths in IT applications, network technologies and services to address them."