OMA grants ‘push-to-communicate for public safety’ license to 3GPP

Move will enable 3GPP to use the OMA PCPS specifications in its work to develop a standard for 4G LTE mission critical push-to-talk applications and thereby avoid ‘reinventing the wheel’

OMA grants ‘push-to-communicate for public safety’ license to 3GPP

Open Mobile Alliance (OMA) has agreed to let the standards body 3GPP use its Push-to-Communicate for Public Safety (PCPS) specifications in its work to develop standard specifications for mission critical push-to-talk (MCPTT) on LTE. A copyright agreement is now in place.

The agreement, approved by the OMA Board and now out for signature among the 3GPP SDOs, is a vital aid to the progress of the work of 3GPP’s new SA6 working group, allowing them to use PCPS 1.0 texts where needed to complete 3GPP MCPTT without having to ‘re-invent the wheel’.

In recognition of the efforts in both OMA and 3GPP to get this decision made and implemented in good time, the OMA general manager, Seth Newberry, commented: “OMA extends its thanks to all who worked so hard to forge this agreement and we wish SA6 the best of luck in developing the LTE MCPTT specification. We look forward to future collaboration with 3GPP and the first responder community the world over.”

Balazs Bertenyi, the 3GPP SA chairman, praised the way that the memberships of both bodies were able to move on this agreement. “This copyright agreement will ensure that the specifications for LTE MCPTT get done. If the stakeholders hadn’t shown the goodwill and enthusiasm that has been in evidence, we could have been facing delays in getting some of the specifications based on OMA PoC ready on time.”

LTE lacks the kind of mission critical applications required by first responders on their communications networks. However, the two-way radio standards currently used for most mission critical networks around the world, such as TETRA, P25 and Tetrapol, are based on narrowband systems. While they have developed highly sophisticated voice applications, they are limited in the amount of data they can handle.

The desire to harness more data applications, such as video streaming for use by first responders, requires broadband technology, so many countries see a move to LTE-based technology for future emergency services communication networks. However, mission critical standards have to be written for LTE first. 3GPP’s SA6 working group is tasked with writing these standard specifications.


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