The Home Gateway Initiative (HGI) today identified the key operator requirements driving future development of Home Gateways with the commencement of work on its third specification document. The key features addressed will include: designing the Home Gateway for IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS)-based Next Generation Network
(NGN) environments; the growing need for supporting the SOHO (Small Office/Home Office) market; and the impact of connecting Consumer Electronics devices in the broadband home.
"IMS-based NGNs have been hot topics in the industry for some time now, but few standards have been developed that will allow consumer devices to efficiently access added-value services on these networks and, hence, allow operators to generate the increased revenues required to support network investment," said Paolo Pastorino, Chief Technology Officer at the HGI. "With our sets of specifications built around and for the Home Gateway, we are working to address these crucial issues.
"Release 3 will be a solid set of technical specification, based upon the business requirements of our operator members, that will aid all the actors in the broadband home space: operators in delivering and supporting services; vendors in being quicker and more competitive in providing CPE (Customer Premises Equipment) devices; and customers, who will have a real 'plug and play' experience with services, and devices.
"The specifications outlined in the HGI Release 1 document ("The Building Blocks for the Home Gateway", published in July 2006) are now playing a significant part in operators' RFI/RFQs, and many of the home gateways deployed globally are architecturally based upon our specifications," concluded Mr. Pastorino.
Release 3, entitled "Seamless integration into IMS-based NGN service environments", will be finalised and issued in Q4 2008. Prior to that, Release 2, entitled "Evolution of support to end-to-end broadband networks and services", will be finalised and made public in Q4 2007 after the final review that will take place at the HGI Plenary meeting in Shanghai (People's Republic of China) in September 2007.
The HGI was founded and launched by nine telecom operators (Belgacom, BT, Deutsche Telekom, France Telecom, KPN, TeliaSonera, NTT, Telefonica and Telecom Italia) in 2004, and now has members from five continents, representing the entire spectrum of actors in the broadband home arena.
The main tasks of the HGI are to establish home gateway-related technical and interoperability specifications and provide input to standardisation bodies.