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   P1447 BISSLA – Business models and Service Level Agreements in open value chains   
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UMTS Radio Access
For further information please contact:

Uwe Herzog
Project Supervisor
Wieblinger Weg 19/4
69123 Heidelberg, Germany

Project Information
What is this Project about

The market of cellular telecommunication is continuously growing during the last decade. Till now, the most important application has been "voice", but it is expected that the role of "data" communication will become more and more relevant in the next future.

This expectation is also supported by the current development inside the information technology world: the bit rate required by the applications in order to transmit complex information, such as video, is dramatically decreasing (e.g. MPEG-4), while their intelligence (i.e. the capacity to match the user needs) is constantly increasing (e.g. mobile and intelligent agent technology). Moreover, the role of Internet and the WEBs exploitation in the fixed network environment is going to be exported to the mobile users.

The key technical factor allowing the presented evolution will be the UMTS system, which is presently under specification by ETSI (and IMT-2000 by ITU).

Untill now it is not clear what the behaviour of "applications" in the UMTS system will be. Questions like the following should be answered:

  • What will be the UMTS applications (market demand, suitability of the available bit rate, ...)?
  • What is the behaviour of applications developed for fixed network when used in the wireless cellular environments (wireless link quality, handover, ...)?
  • What are the requirements in terms of "exchange of control" and "QoS" (Quality of Service) information between the applications and the UMTS network?
  • Should the application itself measure and adapt bit rate and features to the changing network quality or should the network continuously inform the application about it negotiating the QoS parameters?
  • What are the relevant QoS parameters for the applications?

It is quite evident that the answers to the listed questions have strong implications on both the guess about the future wireless market and the technical solution that should be adopted. The selection of multiple radio interfaces for UMTS (W-CDMA and TD-CDMA) from ETSI increases the complexity of the identified problems. Furthermore, it is still not clear how many different interfaces the ITU IMT-2000 will use.

In this project an answer will be found by means of the test of a set of promising applications using an emulated UMTS radio and network channel. Radio alternatives, handover and exchange of control and QoS information will be explored. Theoretical studies, improvement of application prototypes, simulations of radio interfaces, implementation of emulator, evaluation performances and deep analysis of tests are the path selected by the project in order to achieve its results.

The ongoing work in the standard bodies about UMTS and IMT-2000, the ongoing studies on mobile and intelligent agents (FIPA, OMG) and the emerging transport techniques on both the data stream (MPEG-4) and the network side (ATM, IP and mobile IP) are the background information required for the project.

For the technical approach it is planned to adopt an already implemented emulator (developed inside the ACTS framework) which could be quite easily adapted to the scope of the project. Furthermore an MPEG-4 browser (developed inside the MPEG standardisation body) is available.

The possibility to understand how will be the impact of innovative radio interfaces on the performance application before their implementation is a great value to influence the standard environment on both the UMTS system and application definition. From the operator’s point of view, the studies proposed in the project supply new prospective for the development of innovative services to acquire new shares of market.

What are the key results of this Project?

  • To explore the innovative radio interface technologies emerging for 3rd generation mobile telecommunications.
  • To verify how data, multimedia, interactive applications behave in the UMTS environment and to identify the application and application transport opportunities in the wireless market.
  • To verify what kind of requirement these applications require to be provided by the wireless network, especially in terms of QoS interaction and negotiation.
  • Evaluation of applications performances in the UMTS environment
  • To understand the potential of the innovative radio interfaces
  • To determine the supportability of data applications in these wireless environments
  • To identify requirements on both applications and network systems for their coexistence.

The key results of the project will answer the following questions:

  • Which new radio interfaces best support the envisaged UMTS services
  • How does the introduction of the radio interface influence the behaviour of currently developed data applications?
  • How is it possible to improve, if needed, the QoS of application supported in the wireless environments?


Project Results