A coalition of top vendors, operators and government agencies backed an effort by the Global Certification Forum (GCF) and The Critical Communications Association (TCCA) to begin development of a certification programme for mission critical services, a move designed to streamline testing and reduce deployment costs.

Ericsson, standards body ETSI, Huawei, Motorola Solutions, Orange, Samsung, Sprint, Telecom Italia and the UK Home Office were listed among a variety of operators, vendors and organisations backing the effort.

GCF and TCCA will initially focus on determining how best to ensure interoperability and security in mission-critical push-to-talk, data and video implementations. Their work will also assess the availability of suitable equipment for conformance testing, and develop a management and governance scheme for the programme.

Initial work is expected to be completed in H1.

In a joint statement, the groups stated creation of a new certification system will help support a multi-vendor market with a wide variety of equipment, competitive pricing and rapid rollout of new products.

GCF CEO Lars Nielsen added in a separate statement the programme will offer “confidence that everything possible has been done by the manufacturer to guarantee delivery of the highest quality of service for users”.