Technical Committee (TC) Mobile Standards Group (MSG) Activity Report 2023

Chair: Dominique Everaere, Ericsson Limited

Responsible for identifying European regulatory requirements for cellular systems developed by the Third Generation Partnership Project (3GPP™), and developing Harmonised Standards and related ETSI standards for the IMT family of cellular systems and technologies evolving from them.

The primary responsibility of ETSI’s Mobile Standards Technical Committee (TC MSG) is to perform work regarding areas of activity as requested by mandates from the European Commission and all other tasks attributed to ETSI in support of European regulation of related systems.

As well as identifying European regulatory requirements on cellular systems to be developed by 3GPP, TC MSG develops Harmonised Standards covering essential requirements under Article 3.2 of the Radio Equipment Directive 2014/53/EU and related ETSI deliverables for GSM as well as the IMT family of technologies and their evolution. The committee maintains close liaison with 3GPP, ITU, and IEEE, as well as other ETSI bodies that might be affected by deliverables produced by MSG.

TC MSG works alongside ETSI’s Electromagnetic Compatibility and Radio Spectrum Matters Committee (TC ERM) in the joint Task Force for European Standards for IMT‑2000 and IMT‑2020 (TFES). TFES has primary responsibility to develop European Norms (ENs) intended to become Harmonised Standards under the Radio Equipment Directive (RED) for members of the IMT family of radio interfaces (GSM, UMTS, LTE, NB-IoT and 5G NR), as defined in ITU‑R Recommendation M.1457.

In February 2023, the committee published an updated version of TS 103 683 V2.1.1, its Technical Specification on Next Generation eCall High Level Application Protocol (HLAP) Interoperability Testing. This revision incorporates an enhancement of NG eCall interoperability test specification covering updated and new test descriptions produced from the latest ETSI/3GPP base specifications.

Concerning the Radio Equipment Directive – and to align with different 3GPP releases, including support for 5G –TC MSG has continued to update the multi-part Harmonised European Standard on access to radio spectrum for IMT cellular networks. Published in January 2023, a revision of EN 301 908-1 V15.2.1 ‘Part 1: Introduction and common requirements; Release 15’ was delivered to the EC, subsequently achieving citation in the OJ in October.

Two further parts were published in September:

These were delivered to the EC for their citation, expected in the first half of 2024. Work meanwhile progressed during the year on finalizing EN 301 908‑25 (NR User Equipment), revision of the EN 301 908‑13 (LTE UE) and other revisions of the E‑UTRA and multi‑RAT Harmonised Standards to align with the 3GPP Releases 17.

A major focus of work in 2023 was on the review of specifications submitted by the O-RAN Alliance within the scope of the PAS process. These notably included:

  • Architecture Description O-RAN.WG1.OAD-R003-v08.00
  • A1 interface General Aspects and Principles O-RAN.WG2.A1GAP-R003-v03.01
  • A1 interface Use Cases and Requirements O-RAN.WG2.A1UCR-R003-v01.01
  • A1 interface Transport Protocol O-RAN.WG2.A1TP-R003-v02.01
  • A1 interface Application Protocol O-RAN.WG2.A1AP-R003-v04.00
  • A1 interface Type Definitions O-RAN.WG2.A1TD-R003-v05.00
  • A1 interface Test Specification O-RAN.WG2.A1TS-R003-v03.00

These seven PAS Work Items were subsequently published as ETSI Technical Specifications in January 2024.

See the full list of TC MSG Work Items currently in development here.