Femtos Get Standardized

3GPP, Femto Forum, and Broadband Forum create new standard in record time enabling operators to deploy standards-based femtocells

April 7, 2009

2 Min Read

LONDON -- The Femto Forum, 3GPP and the Broadband Forumtoday announced that the world's first femtocell standard has beenofficially published by 3GPP, paving the way for standardised femtocells tobe produced in large volumes and enabling interoperability between differentvendors' access points and femto gateways. The new standard, which formspart of 3GPP's Release 8, and interdependent with Broadband Forum extensionsto its Technical Report-069 (TR-069), has been completed in just 12 monthsfollowing close cooperation between 3GPP, the Femto Forum and the BroadbandForum.

The new femtocell standard covers four main areas: network architecture;radio & interference aspects (both completed last December); femtocellmanagement / provisioning and security (finalised this month). In terms ofnetwork architecture, the crucial interface between potentially millions offemtocells and gateways in the network core has been called Iuh. Thisre-uses existing 3GPP UMTS protocols and extends them to support the needsof high-volume femtocell deployments.

The new standard has adopted the Broadband Forum's TR-069 managementprotocol which has been extended to incorporate a new data model forfemtocells developed collaboratively by Femto Forum and Broadband Forummembers and published by the Broadband Forum as Technical Report 196(TR-196). TR-069 is already widely used in fixed broadband networks and inset-top boxes and will allow mobile operators to simplify deployment andenable automated remote provisioning, diagnostics-checking and softwareupdates. The standard also uses a combination of security measures includingIKEv2 (Internet Key Exchange v2) and IPsec (IP Security) protocols toauthenticate the operator and subscriber and then guarantee the privacy ofthe data exchanged.

"In just 12 months we've gone from initial discussions to publication of theworld's first femtocell standard. Operators can now deploy femtocells in theknowledge that their vendors are working to the 3GPP standard." said AdrianScrase, the 3GPP's Project Coordination Group Secretary. "Considerableeffort was expended in 2008 with 3GPP meeting a very demanding schedule forthe availability of 3GPP approved specifications."

Femto Forum Ltd.

3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP)

Broadband Forum

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