ETSI is organizing, with the support of the European Commission (EC), the European Free Trade Association (EFTA), the Critical Communications Association (TCCA) and the Union Internationale des Chemins de fer (UIC), the sixth MCX PLUGTESTSTM. This Plugtests will take place from 8th to 19th November 2021 as a hybrid event, including remote and assisted on-site testing.

During the week from 8th to 19th November 2021, testing will be done remotely like in previous MCX Plugtests, using the existing permanent ETSI MCX remote lab testing facilities to conduct online testing. In addition, from 8th to 12th November 2021, vendors will have the possibility to send their radio equipment (UEs, eNBs) to University of Malaga, Spain, where it can interoperate using live LTE connectivity via remote access and with the on-site assistance of the University of Malaga’s experts. For the equipment sent to University of Malaga, the University of Malaga’s experts team will operate the equipment on behalf of the Vendor or the Vendor can access the equipment remotely. Alternatively, if the COVID-19 situation permits, one member of the Vendor’s team may be allowed onsite per equipment for testing on LTE network.

What are the objectives and scope of the Plugtests event?

The concept of Mission Critical Services such as “Mission Critical Push To Talk" (MCPTT), “Mission Critical Data" (MCData) and “Mission Critical Video" (MCVideo) started with 3GPP Release-13 and is ongoing in current Releases. The Future Railway Mobile Communication System (FRMCS) is based on these Mission Critical Features.

The goal of this MCX Plugtests event is to validate the interoperability of a variety of implementations using different scenarios based on 3GPP Mission Critical Services in Release-16. The MCX Plugtests event will also test FRMCS capabilities like Functional Aliases, Multi-talker, User and Group Regrouping, MCData IP Connectivity etc., defined in 3GPP Release-16. The tests are based on 3GPP, ETSI and IETF standards and are designed for:

  • MCS Application Servers (MCPTT, MCDATA, MCVIDEO)
  • FRMCS Apps using MCX Framework
  • eMBMS Components
  • IMS / SIP Cores
  • Consoles and Control Rooms
  • MCS Test Equipments
  • Evolved NodeBs (eNBs)
  • UEs (User Equipment), LTE Cab Radios, Rugged Handheld Phones
  • Evolved Packet Cores (EPCs)

This 6th MCX Plugtests event will focus on tests with radio equipment (eNBs, UEs, EPCs) with Unicast and Multicast support but will also allow Over-The-Top (OTT) testing of Mission Critical Servers and Clients, as well as include tests of railways-oriented capabilities. Observers and vendors are welcome to help define the scope (i.e. functionality to be tested) for this event. Test Equipment vendors will have a possibility to test as well in the Plugtests.

What were the advantages of attending the 6th MCX Plugtests event?

  • To assess the level of interoperability of your implementations
  • To validate your understanding of the standards
  • To test with (many) other real implementations and demonstrate end-to-end interoperability
  • To debug your implementation: early bug fixing, saving time and costs
  • To promote the technology and the ecosystem

Who may participate?

  • Vendors which develop and produce above-mentioned equipment, to test either remotely using the MCX remote lab for over-the-top testing or by sending the equipment to the host for testing on LTE network.
  • Observers, which can be government organisations, mobile network operators, public safety operators, users, agencies or regulators, can participate remotely.

New Vendors and Observers have to sign the Rules of Engagement and NDA of the MCX Plugtests Programme to participate. 

The Plugtests Observer Programme

Observers are welcome to help define the scope (i.e. functionality to be tested) for this event and to evaluate the tests statistics in the TRT (Test Reporting Tool).

In parallel to the testing, it is planned to organise an observer programme and demos. The focus of the observer programme is to examine and discuss the progress of deployment and the challenges in testing of the Mission Critical Services for Public Safety and Public Transport. The observer programme will be held remotely.

The observer programme will include remote demos from interested vendors, which can show how their solutions meet the MCX Plugtests test cases and observer scenario use cases.

This event will offer the possibility for vendors to ship equipment to Malaga, Spain.

Please contact for the information and contacts for shipment of equipment. Register first.

ETSI and the University of Malaga are monitoring the situation and the onsite presence of one Vendor per equipment for testing on LTE network is subject to the evolution of the health and travel regulations applicable.

Observers and Vendors participating in over-the-top testing will not be allowed onsite.


Registrations are now closed to new organisations and participating organisations wishing to add colleagues to their team may contact

All participants must register to this event even if they participated in previous events part of the MCX PLUGTESTSTM Programme.

All participants are expected to register individually. Each first person from an organisation to register for the event will be de facto the official contact for technical and logistics matters.

After registration, all participants joining the FRMCS Plugtests will be invited to the preparation conference calls and will be subscribed to the Plugtests mailing list dedicated to the FRMCS Plugtests event. 

Participants who joined the MCX Plugtests Programme during one of the past MCX/FRMCS Plugtests events will by default remain on the dedicated mailing list and will receive invitations to the conference calls on this mailing list. 

The registration deadline is 3 September 2021.

The event is free of charge.


By registering for the 6th MCX Hybrid Plugtests event, new participating organisations will join the MCX Plugtests Programme and will be asked to sign the Rules of Engagement (RoE) and Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) which they will receive upon registration.

These RoE and NDA will cover the series of remote and face-to-face Plugtests events which will be held as part of the MCX Plugtests Programme.

Companies which previously signed the RoE and NDA of the MCX Plugtests Programme when registering to one of the past MCX/FRMCS Plugtests events, do not need to sign the RoE and NDA again. Only new organisations joining the Programme will receive the RoE and NDA for signature.

Upon signature of the RoE and NDA sent to the official contact, the new participants will receive their credentials for the 6th MCX Plugtests WIKI. Participants who joined the MCX Plugtests Programme and have already signed the RoE and NDA, will keep their credentials which they can reuse for the 6th MCX Plugtests WIKI (the MCX-remote-lab).

Participants would not be allowed to participate in the event if the NDA of the Programme has not been signed by a representative of their company.

The deadline to return the signed NDAs to ETSI is 10 September 2021.

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