Our opinion is that SOA, when implemented through Web services, currently still stands on pretty shaky ground when it comes to real-time systems. Performance support for XML parsing and the other layers of processing involved in transmitting and receiving SOAP messages is rapidly improving and can be further supplemented with hardware accelerators. However, depending on the nature and size of the message content and the amount of pre- and post-processing layers a message needs to be subjected to, it is still likely that a Web services-based SOA will currently be incapable of fulfilling critical real-time processing requirements.
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