Samsung announced a demonstration of the first 3GPP-compliant mission-critical video—MCVideo, part of the MCPTX standard for LTE Release 14—video call on a cloud platform provided by Amazon Web Services (AWS), indicating a potential alternative to network-based architecture for MCPTX servers.
Conducted at the Samsung lab in Suwon, South Korea, the demonstration utilized a Galaxy XCover Field Pro device in Suwon and an AWS cloud server located in Paris, according to information provided by Samsung in response to inquiries from IWCE’s Urgent Communications.
Despite this large geographical distance between these key components, “there was no difference” in the performance of the video call when compared to MCVideo tests using “on-premise” solutions that have the MCPTX server integrated closely with the LTE network core, according to Derek Johnston, head of marketing at Samsung Networks. Johnston said the cloud service used was a standard offering that AWS provides to telecom carriers.
In the demonstration, Samsung supplied an “end-to-end” MCPTX solution, with the “entire software stack” supporting the service loaded onto the server in the AWS cloud, Johnston said.
Samsung announced the MCVideo test results because “video is obviously the most complex and challenging to deliver,” Johnston said.
For network operators, the potential to leverage a cloud-based solution to provide MCPTX—mission-critical-push-to-talk (MCPTT), mission-critical-data (MCData) and mission-critical-video (MCVideo) services—could prove very beneficial, Johnston said. By using the cloud-based architecture, network providers could reduce their time to deploy—or upgrade—MCPTX services, while realizing greater reliability and resiliency that is inherent with cloud-based applications.
Although the demonstration leveraged an end-to-solution from Samsung, the Samsung MCPTX solution is not required to be deployed in an end-to-end manner; it can work with elements from other vendors, according to a statement from Samsung provided to IWCE’s Urgent Communications.
“Samsung’s MCPTX solution is available in configurations from an end-to-end offering (like how Korean operators have deployed) with an IMS, eMBMS, network application server, etc., to the device,” according to Samsung. “Alternatively, the solution can also be offered over existing networks, with the network-server and device combination.”
Last week, AT&T announced the availability of FirstNet PTT, an LTE service with features that meet the MCPTT standard. FirstNet PTT initially is only available to FirstNet subscribers that use Samsung’s Galaxy XCover Field Pro rugged LTE device with a dedicated button that can be used for push-to-talk communications. Officials for AT&T and Samsung have declined to address multiple questions from IWCE’s Urgent Communications about the identity of the vendor providing the FirstNet PTT solution.
Samsung has not announced being associated with any other MCPTT offering in the U.S. other than with FirstNet, built by AT&T. An AT&T spokesperson confirmed that the initial release of FirstNet PTT conforms with the Release 12 standard of MCPTT, with support for Release 13 capabilities.
Samsung’s cloud-based MCPTX solution—an upgrade of its MCPTT solution that leverages LTE Release 13—also could bolster interoperability effort, according to the Samsung statement to IWCE’s Urgent Communications.
“With the MCPTX software and hardware already installed on the cloud network, any device that is compatible with the standardized MCPTT service platform can interoperate with Samsung’s MCPTX solution, as long as it is connected to public cloud over an IP network,” according to Samsung.
“Additionally, any network elements compliant with the 3GPP standards can achieve interoperability with Samsung’s MCPTX solution. Also, Samsung’s MCPTX solution has been certified with ETSI PlugTest, which is another important factor for its high compatibility.”