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ITU pushing to deliver on next-gen network standards

Posted: 28 Jul 2004 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:zte? next generation networks? itu-t? quality of service? access networks?

China's largest telecommunications equipment maker, ZTE Corp., was chosen at a Focus Group meeting in Geneva of the Next Generation Networks standardization effort within the ITU-T to draft two of the most important aspects of the NGN.

ZTE will draft the standards to cover the requirements and framework for crucial end-to-end quality of service (QoS) architecture for NGN and a QoS framework for IP-based access networks.

"This is an exciting opportunity to contribute to the development of the world's communications infrastructure," said ZTE's senior VP Xie Daxiong. "ZTE greatly values and works with the ITU's international standards and this invitation is a vote of confidence in our continued ability and commitment to remain at the forefront of telecommunications technology and R&D."

The ITU-T established a number of working, or focus groups to deliver standards for NGNs by the middle of next year a particularly ambitious timetable for the organization's standards setting arm which has sometimes been criticized for the time it takes to agree specifications.

However, there is industry wide agreement regarding the urgency of migrating exiting circuit switched networks to IP-based and converged networks using SIP as the call control protocol.

The standards will cover all aspects of a common network for providing fixed and mobile services - a development that's likely to result in the whole structure of the service provider industry changing as wireline and wireless operators merge.

At the June meeting, attended by over 100 delegates from the world's leading equipment makers and network operators, seven focus groups were created to deal with issues such as evolution from existing networks; quality of service; security; service requirement; functional architecture for mobility; control and signaling capability; and future packet-based bearer networks.

This week's meeting is laying down the tough timetables and deliverables for the working groups.

Network operators are very keen on the standardization effort so that they can benefit from economies of scale and the ability to source gear from a variety of suppliers, according to Keith Dickerson, head of standards at BT Group. "We will benefit from specifications that will allow them to move quickly to a packet-based infrastructure. And, manufacturers will be able to offer NGN equipment to a global market, customized to user needs but interoperable."

- John Walko

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