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New IPTV High-Level Architectural Framework

ATIS announced the release of its IPTV High Level Architecture Standard (ATIS-0800007), developed by the ATIS IPTV Interoperability Forum (IIF).

The new document provides a high-level architectural framework to enable end-to-end systems implementation and interoperability for the supporting network design. It serves as a reference architecture for IPTV functional specifications being developed by the IIF.

"The High Level Architecture marks a major step in introducing IPTV into homes globally," said Daniel O'Callaghan, IIF Chairman and Principal Member of Technical Staff, at Verizon. "It was a cooperative effort among many of the communications industry's leading service providers and vendors who worked closely together with the common goal of helping IPTV reach its market potential."

The standard takes into consideration the architecture scaling from local to regional and national service offerings and identifies the components that will interface with each other to deliver IPTV. These include all interfaces between the service-providers and network providers.

The standard also includes considerations on Web-based approaches as well as IMS-based approaches. With the high-level architecture completed, work on the specifications for the following areas is now underway:

- Linear/broadcast TV service. On the IPTV platform this corresponds to the classic form of television offered by cable, terrestrial broadcasters and direct broadcast satellite providers.

- Consumer-domain initialization and attachment. This refers to the initial set of activities that prepare devices in the consumer domain to receive and consume IPTV services.

- Media protocols. These include the protocols used for actual audio and video media delivery over a private IP network.

- Remote management of devices in the consumer domain. This is defined as an access agnostic, secure and reliable mechanism to configure, monitor, and manage the devices in the consumer domain, including software download/upgrade.

-An Emergency Alert System (EAS) for IPTV. This solution broadens the delivery of EAS messages from a few linear channels to the complete IPTV experience, spanning the full range of activities from live and recorded TV viewing, through games, internet streaming and sourced content and even including IPTV client menu activities. The goal is to deliver important emergency alerts to any person using the IPTV service, independent of activity.

"The architecture's intricacy shows the many aspects of entertainment, communications technology, and security that were taken into consideration in this complex and highly cooperative undertaking," said Randy Sharpe, Co-Chair of the IIF Architecture Task Force and Senior Principal Engineer, at Alcatel-Lucent. "It truly covers all aspects of IPTV delivery."

Understood, but I'm left wondering if it is a truly flexible and extensible open standard, because those keywords were not mentioned in the briefing.

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