Technology Update : Issue no. 1/2009

    First release of Open IPTV Forum solution

    In January 2009, the Open IPTV Forum (OIPF) delivered the first release of an end-to-end solution based on an architecture that meets the requirements identified for a set of initial services and features.

    Since its inception in March 2007, the Open IPTV Forum has grown from collaboration between Ericsson, France Telecom/Orange, Nokia Siemens Networks, Panasonic, Philips, Samsung, Sony, and Telecom Italia, to a consortium of fifty members that includes many leading CE manufacturers, network infrastructure/middleware vendors, and service providers in the IPTV industry.

    Ericsson Review previously reported an overview of the goals and scope of the Forum in Open IPTV Forum – Toward an open IPTV standard (Ericsson Review, Vol. 84(2007)3). From the outset, the Forum has chosen to allow for access to services provided over unmanaged networks with no quality-of-service guarantees (the “Open Internet” model – the first attempt of which we are aware in the industry to standardize aspects of this model); and offered by an IMS-based managed network.

    OIPF Release 1 covers basic IPTV services including Scheduled Content and Content on Demand as well as additional features, such as interactivity, and integration with managed network-based communications services – for instance, voice caller ID, instant messaging and presence as well as DLNA-based content/devices in the home. The logical architecture defines a home network in which an IMS Gateway provides access to an operator’s managed IMS network (the network interfaces are based on definitions by ETSI TISPAN).

    The solution in Release 1 is specified in seven volumes.
    • Volume 1 provides an overview of the other six volumes.
    • Volume 2 specifies the media formats (the combination of the audio, video, image and system formats) that should be supported. The selection of audio and video formats is based on the ETSI codec toolbox. [Ref. 1]
    • Volume 3 specifies how the media format is represented in metadata for the content item. This metadata specification extends, in a compatible way, the Service Discovery and Selection and Broadcast Content Guide specifications defined by the ETSI DVB Program.
    • Volume 4 specifies the details of the protocols to be used over various logical interfaces – those between the home network and the service provider network (UNI); the interfaces between the logical entities in the home network (HNI); and the interfaces between network provider functional entities (NPI). NPIs are based on references to the ETSI TISPAN specifications. [Ref. 2]
    • Volume 5 provides a browser environment based on CEA-2014 for presentation of user interfaces. The browser environment includes scripting support for interaction with network server-side applications and has been extended with APIs of other end-device functions, such as media control, DRM support and IMS signaling.
    • Volume 6 defines a procedural application environment that can be used to intercept and augment services from the network. The procedural application environment is based on the Globally Executable MHP (GEM) platform defined by the DVB for use with an application gateway defined in the logical home network architecture.
    • Volume 7 defines the security solution chosen by the Forum for authentication, content and service protection. The Forum has chosen Marlin for content and service protection in end-devices (TVs/set-top boxes) but also offers a logical content and service protection gateway in the architecture that can map from any proprietary protection (DRM or Conditional Access) solution chosen by a service provider to one of two standardized protected interfaces to the TVs/set-top boxes (DTCP-IP or Common Interface Plus).
    The OIPF Release 1 specifications will be subject to profiling with a view to testing and certification of devices based on these profiles. It is anticipated that the specification of these profiles and their accompanying test specifications will be published in mid-2009.

    With the specification of Release 1 completed, members of the Forum have already begun work on Release 2, which will address additional requirements for new services and features. These include targeted and personalized advertisements, access to local and network-based personal video recorders, time-shift functionality, notifications (including emergency notifications), book-marking of content items being viewed, collection of audience metrics, and the ability to transfer an IPTV session from one device to another.

    To continue its mission in 2009 and beyond, the Open IPTV Forum will alter its current structure into a legal entity that will allow it to collaborate with other standards-development organizations in a more efficient way while continuing to attract the membership that believes in its goals and results.


    The Open IPTV Forum is a group of companies that has a common mission to drive mass market next generation IPTV. The forum is fully open to participation across the communications and entertainment industries. Ericsson is part of this initiative with the goal to provide consumers with an easy to use “plug-and-play” interactive personalized TV (IPTV) experience. 

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    Ref 1ETSI TS 101 154, “Digital Video Broadcasting (DVB); Specification for the use of Video and Audio Coding in Broadcasting Applications based on the MPEG-2 Transport Stream”
    Ref 2ETSI TS 183 063, “Telecommunications and Internet converged Services and Protocols for Advanced Networking (TISPAN); IMS-based IPTV Stage 3”



    An IMS-based TV solution provides common functions and service enablers for integrating communication and entertainment services, tailoring content and services to individual users and allowing them to interact with content.
Moreover, IMS-based TV is the only TV solution that gives operators a clear roadmap towards a truly converged TV service offering such as the Individual TV Experience. This will give users access to user-generated and premium content from any kind of device, whether it is a mobile phone, a TV set or a PC.

Operators looking for a future-proof IPTV solution need an infrastructure that can provide their subscribers with ubiquitous access and high-speed connectivity to realize the full benefits of personalization, interactivity and mobile-fixed convergence.

Full Service Broadband architecture with an IMS-based TV solution makes it possible to exceed the expectations of consumers and enable an “any service on any device” approach to TV. 

    Download the white paper... 


    MMTel, or Multimedia Telephony, is the global standard for the next stage in the evolution of telephony. It offers real-time multimedia communication, and will eventually replace fixed and mobile circuit-switched telephony.

    Based on the IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS), MMTel offers converged fixed and mobile, real-time multimedia services that allow users to communicate using voice, video and chat. Users can also share image files and video clips easily.

    MMTel combines quality, interoperability, efficiency, regulatory and supplementary services with the rich media and dynamics of internet community-based communication.

Although IMS investments represent a long-term commitment, operators and carriers who start with MMTel can generate new revenue streams almost immediately, by adding new multimedia services to their offerings, for example.

    Download the white paper... 

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    “The Open IPTV Forum plays a vital role in evolving a distribution platform for managed interactive TV. Its open standards give the industry a rich set of innovative features that decrease operating costs and shorten time to market.

    In short, the OIPF protects rights holders’ interests through safe distribution of digital content and meets the wants and needs of the internet-savvy generation through innovatively tailored distribution – for example, through individualization, time-/place-/device-shifting and interactivity.”

    Rene Summer, Director of Government and Industry Relations, Ericsson and author of Reshaping the business of television (Ericsson Business Review, issue 3, 2008)