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 Monday, 09 June 2008

A recent meeting of ITU-Ts Study Group 12 saw consent first stage of the approval process - on two key new standards for IPTV.

The first ITU-T Recommendation defines user requirements for Quality of Experience (QoE) for IPTV services.

Quality of Experience (QoE) is defined thus: The overall acceptability of an application or service, as perceived subjectively by the end-user.

The new Recommendation (ITU-T Rec. G.1080) defines QoE requirements from an end user perspective, agnostic to network deployment architectures and transport protocols. They are specified as end-to-end and information is provided on how they influence network transport and application layer behaviour. QoE requirements for video, audio, text, graphics, control functions and meta-data are provided.

The second ITU-T Rec. (ITU-T Rec. G.1081) consented defines performance monitoring for IPTV. The goal of this is to provide higher QoS/QoE to customers by identifying, localizing and quantifying service and network issues. IPTV performance monitoring can be software based, hardware based, or a hybrid.

Monitoring parameters, monitoring points and monitoring methods are defined that allow the service provider/network operator to monitor the performance of the service delivery to the end user.

Successful deployment of IPTV services requires performance to be monitored at the customer premise (e.g. set-top-box), key aggregation points such as DSL Access Multiplexer (DSLAM) or cable modem termination system (CMTS) and at interconnect points between disparate network domains. Performance monitoring can help:

  • Find errors in an end-to-end system (system debugging)
  • Check the resource utilization and the work load of system components
  • Compare values (metrics) regarding performance of different system deployments
  • Provide a base for modelling the system
  • Find system bottlenecks
  • Optimize IPTV network deployment
  • Ensure that system performance does not degrade with time.

IPTV standards are progressing rapidly through ITU-T's IPTV Global Standards Initiative (GSI). With successful first generation IPTV services offered by many service providers worldwide standards are seen as vital to boost next generation services where a customer may go into shop, buy an IPTV box, call their network operator and sign-up and then access services from a range of third party service providers. More Recommmendations are expected to be consented at the upcoming IPTV-GSI meeting 23-27 June in Geneva.