The prospects for the deployment of femtocells in Europe this year have significantly improved following the agreement between industry bodies regarding standardisation issues. The joint publication by the 3GPP, the Femto Forum and the Broadband Forum of the vital interop standard looks to resolve femtocell incompatibility issues between different vendors' access points and femto gateways.
According to the chairman of the Femto Forum, Simon Saunders, this move was crucial in turning the many femtocell operator trials taking place around the world into mass market commercial deployments. "This really fires the femto guns after some hard work in record time for the standardisation effort," said Saunders.
The new standard has adopted the Broadband Forum's TR-069 management protocol which has been extended to incorporate a new data model for femtocells developed collaboratively by Femto Forum and Broadband Forum members and published by the Broadband Forum as Technical Report 196 (TR-196). Suppliers are already adopting the standard, and in January Ubiquisys announced its first implementation.
"Operators can now deploy femtocells in the knowledge that their vendors are working to the 3GPP standard." said Adrian Scrase, the 3GPP's Project Coordination Group Secretary.
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