IEEE Communications Magazine • September 2006
0163-6804/06/$20.00 © 2006 IEEE
BACKGROUND AND MOTIVATION
The current environment for deployment and
access to communications services and the candi-
dates which are being discussed for near-term
deployment are rather static and centralized.
They rely on prearrangement and subscription,
rather than discovery. We need to enable dynam-
ic discovery, invocation, and delivery of services
which behave more like mobile entities than part
of a fixed infrastructure. The strategy we outline
here builds on existing IP Multimedia Subsystem
(IMS) technologies and represents a fairly mod-
est proposal to make significant progress toward
a state where information and services flow
freely without regard to limitations of geography
or access devices.
We approach the problem of untethering ser-
vices by postulating a new type of network ele-
ment which we call the Ubiquitous Service
Platform Service Broker (USP-SB). The role of
the USP-SB is to manage service flows, storage,
and access to the information which is required
for services to describe and reveal themselves,
and for users to locate them when needed.
A guiding principle of our approach is to uti-
lize services provided by the underlying IMS net-
work wherever possible to avoid reinvention and
to make the USP as lightweight as possible.
Thus we rely on the IMS capabilities, especially
for authentication, authorization, and charging.
The USP superstructure can be applied to other
underlying networks with appropriate adjust-
ments and enhancements. For example, the
underlying infrastructure could be the Web ser-
vices, which would force the USP either to
implement one’s own solutions or to adopt other
solutions such as Liberty Alliance’s single sign-
on for user authentication.
B3G SERVICE FEATURES
There is no formal definition for “beyond 3G”
(B3G), but there has been much speculation and
anticipation about what comes after the develop-
ments currently being pursued. The leading edge
of Next-Generation Network evolution within
3GPP is represented by the IMS platform in
Release 7 [1–3]. Various proposals are converg-
ing on a wide-area, wireless broadband network
which is optimized for data, yet capable of deliv-
ering wireline voice and video as well.
Services in the B3G network will be provid-
ed by a variety of service providers who are
separate from network operators, and will
compete with each other to improve their qual-
ity and reduce their cost. So far, mobile net-
work operators have been taking the “walled
garden” approach, where services are provided
either by the network operators themselves or
by those service providers who already have
business relationship with them through tightly
Andrew Do-Sung Jun, Gabor Kiss, and Hira Agrawal, Telcordia Technologies Inc.
Hyunseo Park, Sookyang Kang, KyungChul Sihn, and DaeSik Kim, Electronics and Telecommunications