Several technology companies, together with the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI), have established a new working group aimed at creating specifications for “mobile edge computing”.
Mobile operators NTT Docomo and Vodafone, along with vendors Huawei, IBM, Intel and Nokia Networks, have joined the Mobile Edge Computing (MEC) industry specification group (ISG).
Mobile edge computing is the extending of processing and storage from the internet into mobile base stations at the edge of networks.
This approach means applications and services can be integrated into mobile networks in close proximity to where people connect to them, improving user interactivity with local businesses and points of interest.
An example of the services that mobile edge computing could support is the connected car, for which low latency vehicle-to-vehicle connectivity and services are required.
Peter Jarich, vice president at Current Analysis, said the industry can now “look toward the MEC ISG to encourage the development of a broader mobile edge computing ecosystem characterised by open standards”.
Nokia said that the initiative will focus on “open architecture and application programming interfaces (APIs) for value creation in mobile multi-vendor environments for a range of computing platforms”.
One of these computing platforms will be Nokia Liquid Applications, which brings services to mobile broadband users from the mobile base station.
The technology uses the vendor’s Radio Applications Cloud Service, localised processing, content storage and access to real-time radio and network information, made available directly from the inside of base stations.
Marc Rouanne, executive vice president for mobile broadband at Nokia Networks, added that the group “builds on our view of fundamentally changing the telecom industry through increasing our collaboration with different players and partners”.
Steve Price, general manager of Intel’s communications infrastructure division, added that “by positioning intelligent, programmable platforms closer to mobile devices, we are enabling richer, more customised user experiences”.