The ITU's standardisation arm, ITU-T, is to create a focus group that will produce global standards for NGN.
The worId's leading information and communication technology (ICT) standardisation body has responded to industry calls for specifications with the first results expected one year from now.
The fundamental difference between NGN and today's network is the switch from current ‘circuit-switched’ networks to ‘packet-based’ systems, such as those using internet protocol (IP).
The need for global standards is critical, as most operators expect to move to an IP infrastructure.
One area to be addressed is the concept dubbed ‘nomadicity’, which will give fixed line and mobile users completely seamless communication.
"Industry sought a quick solution on NGN and we responded," says Houlin Zhao, director of the ITU Telecommunication Standardisation Bureau.
"In this case, the focus group concept has given us the means to act with the level of immediacy required. There is no faster and more efficient place for the development of this work.
"Through this initiative, ITU-T is bringing all players together in an environment where they can create truly global specifications for the service-aware network of the future, to deliver dynamic, customized services on a massive scale,” says Herb Bertine, director of standards, Lucent Technologies.
The exact structure of the group will be agreed following its first meeting in June this year.