Building trust in critical broadband services

Monday, 29 June, 2020

Building trust in critical broadband services

TCCA’s webinar series is bringing users, developers and researchers together to set the pace for mission-critical communications innovation.

The single common thread that is woven throughout critical communications is trust — the end user must be able to have 100% confidence in the services provided. Trust in TETRA is underpinned by the robust specifications of the standard coupled with TCCA’s Interoperability (IOP) Testing & Certification process, developed to enable a trusted, open, multi-vendor market for equipment.

In order to meet these objectives for critical communications broadband equipment and services, various initiatives are underway, and overviews of these form the basis of TCCA’s new series of Critical Update webinars.

The first in the series was presented by ETSI. Available to view online (, the webinar gives an overview of the ETSI MCX Plugtests. The goal of the upcoming 5th MCX Plugtests event in September is to validate the interoperability of a variety of implementations using different test scenarios based on 3GPP Mission Critical Services in Release-15.

The second webinar focused on the MCS-TaaSting (Mission Critical Testing as a Service) project, which is funded by NIST (the US National Institute of Standards and Technology). MCS-TaaSting aims to meet the needs of the mission-critical and public safety community in terms of conformance testing. It will enable the industry to prove the 3GPP standards-compliance of their implementations and will give the users and operators the confidence to buy compliant products.

The goal is to develop a 3GPP-based MCS testing engine that will be available via both a cloud service and over LTE hardware for the conformance testing of mission-critical applications. This will enable cost-efficient, regular and frequent testing, re-testing, certification and recertification of the myriad and increasing combinations of devices, operating systems, middleware and applications that form part of the mission-critical broadband ecosystem.

The MCS-TaaSting webinar was presented by project coordinator Fidel Liberal from the University of the Basque Country. He is a recognised expert in the mission-critical communications environment and leads a number of mission-critical communications and 5G-related research and development projects. The co-presenter was Michael Proestler, founder and CEO of GridGears, one of the MCS-TaaSting project partners. GridGears was founded in 2017 with the goal to contribute to the standards and enable better, more integrated and more efficient emergency services.

The webinar was intended for anyone looking for trustable 3GPP compliant solutions, including vendors developing products and solutions, operators looking to implement mission-critical broadband networks and services, test houses seeking a validated platform and of course end users who want to learn about some of the processes, systems and technologies that are combining to deliver trusted critical broadband.

While critical broadband systems are emerging, they will only provide a partial solution for many years to come, and TETRA will still be required to provide very high-resilience, secure voice and short data functionality. The third webinar in the series, entitled TETRA to 2035 and beyond, gave an overview of the continuing enhancement of the TETRA standard. This session looked at how ETSI’s Technical Committee TETRA and Critical Communications Evolution (TC-TCCE) is developing key interworking standards to enable critical broadband and TETRA terminals to be used across both types of network.

Details of all webinars can be found here at

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