Moving forward with mission critical services certification

25 April 2024

Ensuring that mission critical services over broadband networks are actually mission critical is a complex process.

First responders and other users of critical communications services need to have full trust in their voice, video, and data applications in what could be life-threatening situations. To ensure this trust, the Global Certification Forum (GCF) is working together with TCCA to develop an industry certification program for mission critical products and solutions where conformance to 3GPP standards will be checked and verified and thus ensure interoperability between different solution providers.

The work on establishing this certification program will progress at a dedicated workshop on 17 May, following Critical Communications World in Dubai, which takes place from 14 -16 May. This workshop, the third in the series, will aim to gather input to the future development of the MCX certification programme, and due to its location and timing, will provide an opportunity to hear from local stakeholders to understand regional requirements and ensure alignment with industry. Hosted by TCCA member Airbus n Dubai, the workshop is open to all GCF and TCCA members, and to non-members subject to approval.

GCF and TCCA have established a permanent Mission Critical Services Workstream (MCS WS) within the GCF. This comprises key industry players and subject matter experts from GCF and TCCA member companies, who are in the process of developing the key requirements for testing mission critical services, as well as defining the policies and procedures for the certification program. The team has established testing scope for both Conformance Testing and Field Trials testing and is working to develop Interoperability and Performance testing criteria.

The MCS certification program will ensure that the dependability and resilience that are core characteristics of narrowband services such as TETRA are carried forward into the 4G/5G ecosystem. In 1999, TCCA created and continues to manage the world-leading TETRA Interoperability (IOP) process that underpins the continued success of TETRA around the world. GCF has more than 25 years of best practices in managing certification of wireless products for the telecoms industry.

Certification will be a key topic in the program at Critical Communications World, with dedicated Focus Forums taking place on 14-15 May. Focus Forums are in-depth, deep-dive sessions providing knowledge sharing and comprehensive updates in each topic area. The focused sessions will comprise multiple presentations, interactive discussions, and roundtables, allowing specialists to come together to learn about developments and share their own challenges, experiences, and skills.

Register for the workshop by completing the form provided at this link.