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3GPP FAQs

3GPP FAQs

Questions about 3GPP Membership
Questions about 3GPP email exploder lists
Questions about Legal Matters
Questions about 3GPP Specifications
Questions about Technical Specification Group/Working Group
Questions about Documents and TSG/WG Meetings
Questions about Work Items and Deliverables
Miscellaneous
Technical topics

Questions about 3GPP Membership

Who can become an Individual Member of 3GPP and how much does it cost?
Who may participate in 3GPP meetings?
Who shall fill in the 3GPP Individual Member Application form?
What shall I do if a 3GPP company or official contact details change?
What are the different membership categories?
Who may become an observer?
Who may become a Guest Member and do guests have to pay any fees?
Who can apply for market representative Partnership?
Can an ETSI Observer become an Individual Member of 3GPP?
Can an ETSI Applicant apply for 3GPP Membership?
Can an ETSI Member apply for 3GPP Guest status?

Questions about 3GPP email exploder lists

Are there discussion archives for the 3GPP exploder lists?
How do I subscribe to the 3GPP exploder lists?

Questions about Legal Matters

What is the 3GPP IPR Policy?
What is the 3GPP policy on licensing?
Who owns the Technical Specifications and the Technical Reports approved by 3GPP?
Are meeting contributions to ETSI TC SMG publically available?
Is permission needed to use the 3GPP logo in marketing collaterals or on a web site?
Can I use computer code included with a 3GPP TS to implement a product?

Questions about 3GPP Specifications

How do I create the next Release version of a TS or TR?
Where can the rules, protocols or software needed to develop applications for UMTS be found?
What is the correlation between Stage 1, Stage 2 and Stage 3?
Are the 3GPP specifications produced only in word?
Which group works with specifications covering the use of the GSM codec (either in C or Java based)?
Where can I find documents produced by the GSM MoU Group / GSM Association?
Where would I find a document (e.g. UMTS 30.03 version 3.1.0) which does not appear on the status list?
Where are all the Change Requests (CRs) located?
Where are all the current ETSI SMG specs located?
Which group works on Physical Layer aspects of UMTS/LTE?
Where can I find the list of Abstract syntax notation (ASN.1) object identifiers?
Where can I find the 3GPP Confidentiality and Integrity algorithms?
What is a Release - how does specification version numbering work?
Where can I find information on the current status of 3GPP specifications?
What is the system for numbering specifications?
What is the meaning of the text at the foot of the TS/TR cover page?

Questions about Technical Specification Group/Working Group

Who are the TSG/WG Officials and Support team and where can I find their contact details?
Where can I find the Terms of Reference for my TSG/WG?
May I become an Official?
Where are my TSG/WGs documents stored?

Questions about Documents and TSG/WG Meetings

How do I register for a meeting?
Who can submit a change proposal on any 3GPP specifications to 3GPP?
If a change proposal is submitted how long does it take for it to get approved?
How to get a user name and password for "Reserve a Document Number"?
How do I obtain a document number for my contribution?
Where can I download documents for an upcoming meeting?
Where can I find a temporary document template? 

Questions about Work Items and Deliverables

What is my role when my TSG/WGs has to approve a deliverable?
What are the different types of deliverables?
Can I write an 3GPP Document myself?
Do I and my company have to support my TSG/WGs Work Items?

Miscellaneous

Do I need a password and user name to access the 3GPP Web site ?
Can you give me information about which companies manufacture particular types of equipment. (...)
How can I determine when a meeting contribution document (TDoc) became publicly available?
Is it possible to determine the date and time of publication of a particular version of a 3GPP specification?

Technical topics

What formalities do I have to go through to get type approval for terminal equipment in Europe? Is there a single point of contact? What standards does my equipment need to conform to in order that I can place it on the market?
Where can I find a list of technical terms and abbreviations used in 3GPP documents?
What is the difference between a SIM and a USIM? What is a UICC?
I have transferred a video file from my phone to my PC. Where can I find a player for 3gp files?
Where can I find the specification of the SIM Lock feature?

Who can become an Individual Member of 3GPP and how much does it cost?

Individual Members are by definition members of the Organizational Partners of 3GPP. This means that members of standardization bodies such as ETSI, ARIB, TTA, TTC, ATIS and CCSA have a right to take part in 3GPP. If your company becomes an ETSI member, please be informed that for participation in 3GPP you need to pay 3 units of contribution as a minimum except SMEs, Users, Universities, Public Research Bodies who should pay 2 units (instead of 1).

ETSI Members' and associate members' fees are calculated by class. The class is derived from the member company's annual ECRT band (Electronics Communications Related Turnover) – see ECRT definition.
Each class corresponds to a number of units. This number determines the contribution payable.

Example: If your organization declares an annual ECRT of up to 135€ million, you would need to pay 2 Units of Contribution (corresponding to 9380€ per year) plus an additional UoC for participation in 3GPP of 3380€ (see fees table). Members joining ETSI during the 2nd half of the year benefit from a 50% rebate on the membership fee of the current year. In this case, you would pay 12760€ minus 50% = 6380€ for yyyy.

Who may participate in 3GPP meetings?

To attend a 3GPP meeting, you must be a 3GPP Individual Member (i.e., you must be a Member of one of the Organizational Partners involved in the project; ARIB, CCSA, ETSI, ATIS, TTA , TTC or TSDSI). A non-member company should seek membership with one of the above partners to be eligible to contribute and participate at 3GPP Meetings.

Who shall fill in the 3GPP Individual Member Application form?

The person legally responsible for the requesting company shall fill in the form.

What shall I do if a 3GPP company or official contact details change?

All changes of correspondence should be notified to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
In case of change of official contact an ETSI Online (EOL) account will be created for the new contact.
Please note that as official contact person you can view and modify your personal and organization's contact details via the "Manage my membership" web interface.

What are the different membership categories?

The different membership categories of 3GPP are described in Article 4 of the 3GPP Working Procedures.

Who may become an observer?

The status of Observer may be granted by the Organizational Partners to an entity which has the qualifications to become a future Partner (see also 3GPP Working Procedures Article 10)

Who may become a 3GPP Guest Member and do guests have to pay any fees?

The 3GPP Guest status is for potential Individual Members who may be granted permission to participate in 3GPP for a maximum period of 6 months. Guest status is granted on a case-by-case basis by the Organizational Partners (see also 3GPP Working Procedures Article 10). If you like to apply for a Guest status, please complete the on-line 3GPP Application form.

No membership fees are requested for Guest applications. The Guest status is a one time only membership which is used to enable a company to decide whether or not they wish to become a full member (by joining one of the Partners).

Who can apply for market representative Partnership?

Organisation who have the ability to offer market advice to 3GPP and to bring into 3GPP a consensus view of market requirements (e.g., services, features and functionality) falling within the 3GPP scope (see also 3GPP Working Procedures, Article 7).

Can an ETSI Observer become an Individual Member of 3GPP?

An ETSI Observer cannot become an Individual Member of 3GPP. An ETSI Observer may "observe" all activities, but their participation is limited to the ETSI General Assembly only. Therefore, ETSI Observers have no participation rights in 3GPP. ETSI Observers have access to ETSI documentation and of course to 3GPP documentation since that is openly published on the web.

3GPP does have it's own category called "Observer" but that is entirely different and is used for potential Partners.

Can an ETSI Applicant apply for 3GPP Membership?

YES, an ETSI Applicant means that your request to become an ETSI Member will be addressed (and normally approved) at the next General Assembly and that the company has specified they want to participate in 3GPP activities. See also above regarding 3GPP fees.

Can an ETSI Member apply for 3GPP Guest status?

Yes, any ETSI Member can apply for a 3GPP Guest status by filling in the on-line 3GPP Application form

Are there discussion archives for the 3GPP exploder lists?

Yes! To see the complete list please have a look here: Home page of listserv and scroll down until you find the list you are interested in. For example, the archives for the main RAN email list.

How do I subscribe to the 3GPP exploder lists?

All 3GPP email exploder lists can be found at list.3gpp.org. In order to subscribe to any of the lists, scroll down until you find the list you are interested in, then click on the link and on the right side of the page you will find Subscribe or Unsubscribe. Click on the link and follow the simple instructions. Delegates who already have an ETSI username and password should use the list management application on the ETSI site.

What is the 3GPP IPR Policy?

The 3GPP Organizational Partners have agreed that their IPR policies should be respected and that their respective members should be encouraged to declare "their willingness to grant licenses on fair, reasonable terms and conditions and on non discriminatory basis" (Article 3.1 of the Third Generation Partnership Project). For more information, look here >>>

The above-mentioned principles are further reflected in Article 55 of the 3GPP Working Procedures  which request that each Individual Members should declare "at the earliest opportunity, any IPR which they believe to be essential, or potentially essential, to any work ongoing within 3GPP".

What is the 3GPP policy on licensing?

Some aspects of 3GPP systems are covered by essential Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) - that is, patented technologies without which equipment cannot be implemented. The IPR vests in - i.e. the patents are held by - individual companies, and not by 3GPP itself or any of its Organizational Partners (OPs). All Individual Members of 3GPP abide by the IPR policies of the OP to which they belong; all such policies are broadly similar see also "What is the 3GPP IPR Policy", and require IPR holders to make licences available to all third parties, whether or not they are 3GPP Individual Members, under fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory (FRAND) terms.

Neither 3GPP nor its component OPs offer an IPR search service. It is the responsibility of each manufacturer / system implementor to seek and obtain its own licenses from the individual IPR holders. For more information, and a guide to the IPRs declared to each 3GPP OP, look here>>>

Who owns the Technical Specifications and the Technical Reports approved by 3GPP?

According to the Article 3.2.2 of the Third Generation Partnership Project Agreement, the 3GPP Organizational Partners jointly own copyright on the Technical Specifications and the Technical Reports approved by 3GPP.

Are meeting contributions to ETSI TC SMG publically available?

ETSI TC SMG meeting documents can be found on the ETSI docbox file server. Access is limited to bona fide representatives of ETSI member organizations. These, together with early versions of the GSM specifications, have been gathered together into a set of DVDs "A Technical History of GSM" available to ETSI members via the ETSI WEB store.

The GSM standardization work was transferred from CEPT to ETSI in 1991. TC SMG was closed at meeting #32 and TC MSG created to continue the work. Like almost all ETSI Technical Committees, participation in TC SMG and its working groups was open to all ETSI member organizations. That is, any bona fide representative of an ETSI member was free to participate. Exceptionally, other individuals could participate by express invitation of the chairman. Each meeting report contains a list of participants with their corporate affiliations.

Until the late 1990s, all meeting documents were circulated in paper form. Electronic files started to take over from paper in around 1997. Meeting documents ("TDocs") were distributed by post (later, by fax) in batches prior to the meeting, to those persons registered as regular participants in SMG or the appropriate working group, and many more documents were produced during the course of the meeting itself. Although a provision existed (and still exists) in the context of the IPR Policy for contributors to place restrictions on the distribution of TDocs via a formal notification at the time the document was provided, this was seldom if ever invoked. In the absence of such a condition, all TDocs were free of any restriction on subsequent distribution. Thus no restriction has ever been placed on how meeting participants dispose of the documents subsequent to their distribution before, during, or after the meeting. There were no non-disclosure agreements.

ETSI maintains a paper archive of the SMG TDocs, and bona fide representatives of current ETSI members can, by appointment, make an accompanied search of the archives. This facility extends to members which may not have been members at the time the document was originally produced.

TC-approved versions of ETSI “deliverables” (see ETSI Directives for formal definition of this term) would have been transferred by the support officer of the committee to the secretariat team responsible for publishing ETSI deliverables. That team would have made cosmetic (non-technical) modifications to the draft deliverables before issuing them. Depending on the type of “deliverable”, those documents would have been issued via National Standards Organizations (NSOs) either for immediate publication, or first via either a one-step or two-step national public enquiry and vote process prior to final publication by ETSI. In ETSI parlance, “publication” of a deliverable is the final step in the development cycle of a technical standard, and has a precise meaning. That meaning is not “making publically available”, since draft deliverables released for public enquiry or for vote are "publically available" but not yet "published".

If the confidentiality conditions described above had been imposed on a TDoc by its authors, if the text of that TDoc was in due course incorporated into an ETSI "deliverable", then those conditions are regarded as annulled from the date on which the deliverable is published.

Collections of TDocs / meeting reports have from time to time been made available to ETSI members in CD or DVD form, look here >>>

Is permission needed to use the 3GPP logo in marketing collaterals or on a web site?

ETSI (European Telecommunications Standards Institute) is the sole owner of the following acronyms:

  • ETSI,
  • DECT,
  • UMTS,
  • 3GPP and
  • TIPHON,

as well as the ETSI, TIPHON, 3GPP and LTE logos. ETSI Members are authorized to use these Trade Marks in accordance with Collective Letter 1943. Authorization is needed to use the above mentioned acronyms and logos.

For further information contact the ETSI Legal Team or see http://www.3gpp.org/about-3gpp/legal-matters/logo-use.

Can I use computer code included with a 3GPP TS to implement a product?

Yes, but read this clause carefully. Some 3GPP Technical Specifications include computer code such as ASN.1 or XML (protocols), ANSI-C language (codecs), ...; and some include test vectors (codecs) for verifying implementations. These are published to allow users of these TSs to implement real-world products. No permission is required from 3GPP or its Organizational Partners (OPs) to use this code in the design of products - e.g. to compile the C to implement a codec in machine code.

Nevertheless, there may be essential IPR involved with such a design, and implementers are obliged to seek licences from IPR owners to use that technology. See also What is the 3GPP policy on licensing?

Moreover, the copyright of all 3GPP TSs and TRs vests jointly by all the 3GPP OPs. Other than for in-house copies for the purpose of further development of the 3GPP standard or for product design purposes, etc. you may not reproduce any part of a 3GPP TS or TR without seeking permission from 3GPP (e.g. from the ETSI Legal Team): use the procedure described on the legal area of this site. This means that you must not provide verbatim copies of source code (or lightly modified copies) without seeking permission from 3GPP.

Finally, you are reminded that 3GPP TSs and TRs have no legal status, and you should not design products directly to them. See the advice notice on the cover page of every 3GPP TS and TR. Instead, use the technically identical publication of one of the OPs.

How do I create the next Release version of a TS or TR?

There are three ways of upgrading a Release X spec to Release X+1:

  1. Write a CR to the latest Release X version to incorporate technical changes to satisfy a Release X+1 work item, and on the cover sheet showing the WI code for that work item and the Release code for Release X+1. If the CR is approved at TSG level, this will automatically create the first instance of the next Release of the spec.
  2. Make a specific request to the TSG to upgrade the latest version of the spec from Release X to Release X+1. This might be needed if the functionalities of the two Releases diverge, though backwards-incompatibility is to be avoided if possible.
  3. Do nothing. If a spec has survived unchanged throughout the period during which Release X+1 was developed, when Release X+1 is frozen, all such specs will automatically be upgraded from Release X to Release X+1 without technical change.

Where can the rules, protocols or software needed to develop applications for UMTS be found?

A good place to start is on the 3GPP website, and particularly the specifications list.

What is the correlation between Stage 1, Stage 2 and Stage 3?

A three-stage methodology as defined in ITU T Recommendation I.130 is applied in 3GPP according TR 21.900 clause 4.1:

  • Stage 1 is an overall service description from the user’s standpoint.
  • Stage 2 is an overall description of the organization of the network functions to map service requirements into network capabilities.
  • Stage 3 is the definition of switching and signalling capabilities needed to support services defined in stage 1.

Are the 3GPP specifications produced only in word?

The 3GPP specs are published as ETSI deliverables, and these are available in PDF form http://www.etsi.org/standards-search. But you can download a free Word viewer (i.e. read only) from the Microsoft web site. PDF is inherently secure (more so than html, in fact), and because WordViewer is very simple (it can not handle macros, for example), it is pretty safe too. ETSI has no plans at present to publish specifications in plain text or in html.

Which group works with specifications covering the use of the GSM codec (either in C or Java based)?

The SMG STC SMG11 and 3GPP SA4 specifications, available from http://www.3gpp.org, respectively deal with this. It gives you a list of specifications via the status list (look for the GSM specs in the MS-Access database at : http://www.3gpp.org/ftp/Information/Databases/Spec_Status/)

and you can then download the specs you need. If you do not have an ETSI EOL account, you can download the ETSI equivalent standards from http://www.etsi.org/standards-search.

Where can I find documents produced by the GSM MoU Group / GSM Association?

These documents are not available via 3GPP or its Organizational Partners. You must address this question to the GSM Association.

Where would I find a document (e.g. UMTS 30.03 version 3.1.0) which does not appear on the 3GPP Status List?

Look at http://www.3gpp.org/DynaReport/3003U.htm. It is a document stemming from the initial TC-SMG studies on UMTS, not a product of 3GPP. It was, in fact, published as an ETSI deliverable, TR 101 112, and this may be downloaded via http://www.etsi.org/standards-search.

Where are all the Change Requests (CRs) located?

The CR database can be downloaded under: http://www.3gpp.org/ftp/Information/Databases/Change_Request/

Or you select the specification under:
http://www.3gpp.org/specifications/79-specification-numbering

The information is classed by series so it is very easy to locate the particular specification which interests you. After selecting a series and a specification you will find a line "Change Requests for this spec: click here." which provides a web list of the CRs for this specification.

If, for example, you are looking for CRs on GSM 08.18 then you would use this link:
http://www.3gpp.org/ftp/Specs/html-info/0818-CRs.htm
http://www.3gpp.org/DynaReport/0818http://www.3gpp.org/ftp/Specs/html-info/0818-CRs.htm
-CRs.htm

Where are all the current ETSI SMG specs located?

All the ETSI SMG specs are located here archives for the GSM documentation. An ETSI On-Line account is needed to access these documents. You can apply for an ETSI online account.
In general, the cross-referencing between GSM and ETSI deliverables, and between 3GPP and ETSI deliverables may be found at http://webapp.etsi.org/key/queryform.asp

Which group works on Physical Layer aspects of UMTS/LTE?

The radio aspects are standardised in TSG-RAN. The technical work is done in the 5 Working Groups of RAN (WG1 radio layer 1, WG2 radio layer 2/3, WG3 interfaces, WG4 RF measurements, WG5 Mobile Terminal Conformance Testing).
So Physical Layer aspects are addressed by TSG RAN WG1. Their UMTS specifications are numbered 25.2xx and their LTE specifications are numbered 36.2xx.
The temporary documents (meeting documents etc.) of WG1 are stored on ftp://ftp.3gpp.org/TSG_RAN/WG1_RL1.

Where can I find the list of Abstract syntax notation (ASN.1) object identifiers?

The expandable list of object identifiers is available here >>>. To see the formal definition of the object identifiers, see the document cited on the right. The tree is not necessarily complete; further extensions may be included in the referenced document. For more information look here >>>.

Where can I find the 3GPP Confidentiality and Integrity algorithms?

The 3GPP Confidentiality and Integrity algorithms F8 & F9 (KASUMI) have been developed through the collaborative efforts of the 3GPP Organizational Partners. For more information and in order to download the algorithms look here >>>.

What is a Release - how does specification version numbering work?

To meet new market requirements, 3GPP specifications are continually being enhanced with new features. In order to provide developers with a stable platform for implementation while at the same time allowing the addition of new features, the 3GPP uses a system of parallel "releases". For more information look here >>>.

Where can I find information on the current status of 3GPP specifications?

New versions of many 3GPP specifications are made available shortly after the 3GPP TSG plenary meetings which take place four times a year (March, June, September and December). In order to identify what the current version is or and how to find information about older versions of specifications look here >>>.

What is the system for numbering specifications?

All 3G and GSM specifications have a 3GPP specification number consisting of 4 or 5 digits. (e.g., 09.02 or 29.002). For a more complete description and examples look here >>>.

Who are the TSG/WG Officials and Support team and where can I find their contact details?

Each TSG/WG has a Chairman, up to two Vice-Chairmen (three Vice-Chairmen) in the case of TSGs and a secretary who is a member of the support team. From the 3GPP structural organization page, click on the TSG or WG of interest to reach its home page. From there, click on the "officials" entry in the table.

Where can I find the Terms of Reference for my TSG/WG?

The current Terms of Reference for each TSG/WG appear on the web pages of each TSG/WG.

May I become an Official?

The TSG Chairman and Vice Chairmen are elected by the Technical Specification Group from amongst the Individual Member representatives. Each TSG can elect a maximum of two Vice Chairmen. Once elected, these candidates are proposed to the PCG for appointment.
The Working Group Chairman and Vice Chairmen are elected by the Working Group from amongst the Individual Member representatives. Each Working Group can elect a maximum of two Vice Chairmen.
A candidate for TSG or Working Group election shall provide a letter of support from his Organization and nominations may be made up to the point when an election takes place.
The TSG Chairman and Vice-Chairmen shall be appointed by the PCG on the proposal of the TSG.
The Chairman and the Vice-Chairmen shall be appointed for a two year term of office. The Chairman and Vice-Chairmen may be appointed for one further consecutive term. If, at the end of a Chairman or Vice Chairmans second term, no other candidates are available, the Chairman or Vice Chairmen may be appointed for a further term.
Chairman and Vice Chairmen should not be from the same region, Organizational Partner, or from the same group of companies, unless no other candidate is available.
Successive Chairmen should not be from the same Organizational Partner, the same region or from the same group of companies, unless no other candidate is available

How do I register for a meeting?

To register to any 3GPP TSG/WG meeting, please go to the Meetings tab on the 3GPP Ultimate portal (3GU) at https://portal.3gpp.org/, log in with your EOL credentials, and click "Not registered" in the Registration column of the meeting in question. When registration is complete, you will receive a confirmation email. Keep this email, it contains important information, without which you will not be able to confirm your presence!

Once you are at the meeting you have to "Check-in" to  confirm your presence at the meeting itself. To check in, open the registration confirmation email and click on the check-in URL. This will take you to a page on the local meeting server (not the Internet). After you have checked in, your token will be sent to the main 3GPP server, and the web-based participants list will now show "yes" in the Participated column. Obviously you must be physically present at the meeting venue to be able to reach the local server.

Who can submit a change proposal on any 3GPP specifications to 3GPP?

Any bona fide representative of any 3GPP Individual Member (see list via the first sentence at http://www.3gpp.org/membership) can present a technical contribution - for example, a Change Request - to any 3GPP TSG or WG meeting.

If a change proposal is submitted how long does it take for it to get approved?

The usual procedure is that the responsible Working Group will examine a CR and agree it (or revise it until such time as it be agreeable - or not!). Having been agreed at WG level, it is packaged with related CRs and sent to the TSG plenary, where it will be discussed if necessary and then - if appropriate - formally approved. Within a matter a few weeks at most, a new version of the Specification is produced, which includes the contents of the TSG-approved CR.

TSGs meet every three months, and WGs meet at least once between each TSG meeting (sometimes two or occasionally even more times). Thus from inception of a CR to its approval is normally a matter of a few weeks, depending on the point in the meeting schedule of the WG and TSG concerned.

How to get a user name and password for "Reserve a Document Number"?

You need to request an EOL account via: http://webapp.etsi.org/createaccount/form.asp (username and password will then be sent to you by separate email).

How do I obtain a document number for my contribution?

Delegates wishing to make contributions must first obtain a document number either from the secretary or automatically via an on-line application "Automatic Document Numbering (ADN)" which is used by some groups.

You need a user name and password to "Reserve a Document Number" (see above). 

Where can I download documents for an upcoming meeting?

Each TSG/WG has a specific area allocated on the 3GPP ftp server. For example TSG SA look here ftp://ftp.3gpp.org/tsg_sa/TSG_SA/. It is advisable for delegates attending a meeting to download the documents available prior to the meeting from the ftp server and onto their personal computers. 

Where can I find a temporary document template?

The document template is made available by each TSG/WG in the meeting respective folder on the ftp server (see above).

What is my role when my TSG/WGs has to approve a deliverable?

Approval of Technical Specifications and Technical reports by a TSG shall normally be by consensus. Where consensus cannot be achieved in the TSG a vote may be taken.
When Technical Specifications and Technical Reports become sufficiently stable, they shall be put under change control of the relevant TSG. The further elaboration of these Technical Specifications and Technical Reports shall be achieved by Change Requests (CRs) to be approved by the TSG.

What are the different types of deliverables?

3GPP shall prepare, approve and maintain documents known as Technical Specifications and Technical Reports. Such documents shall be drawn up by the TSGs and shall, following approval at that level, be submitted to the participating Organizational Partners to be submitted to their respective standardization processes.

Can I write an 3GPP Document myself?

Why not?! If you wish to propose a deliverable then bring it to the attention of your chairman and the other members of the TSG/WG in order to discuss the subject.
Each proposed new Work Item shall be supported by at least four Individual Members, and their names shall be recorded in the Work Item definition prepared for the TSG approval. One or more persons shall be named as Rapporteur for the proposed Work Item, and the Rapporteur shall act as the prime contact point on technical matters and for information on progress throughout the drafting phases. The supporting Individual Members are expected to contribute to and progress the new work item throughout the drafting phases.
In addition to the above, TSGs shall approve new Work Items, giving all essential parameters. The proposal shall be entered into the 3GPP work programme, clearly marked as a new entry, for which a unique reference identity shall be allocated.

Do I and my company have to support my TSG/WGs Work Items?

Neither you or your company is obliged to support the work items of your TSG/WG, however it is normal that if you and your company are supporting members of a Work Item that you be in agreement with their work and will normally support the production of the related deliverable.

Do I need a password and user name to access the 3GPP Web site ?

No password is needed to access any information on the 3GPP Web site, all information is openly published.

Can you give me information about which companies manufacture particular types of equipment. Or about what services are available on particular networks?

No. The 3GPP Support Team must remain neutral and must not show bias to any of its Individual Members. Such information may be available from the Global Mobile Suppliers Association (www.gsacom.com) where you will find a statistics area which could be of help.

How can I determine when a meeting contribution document (TDoc) became publicly available?

TDoc numbers start to be allocated some weeks before a 3GPP meeting, and the authors then create them and they or the group’s secretary uploads them to the public file server as soon as possible. Some may have been distributed to the group’s members in draft form for review, using the email exploder, in advance of the final one becoming available, and for some groups, it is normal to distribute even the final TDoc via the exploder, where the secretary picks it up and copies it to the public server. Typically, at the start of a meeting, around 50% of the TDocs are available.

This distribution on the group’s email exploder is important, because once that happens, the document is effectively in the public domain, since membership of the exploder is open to all and is unpoliced.

During the meeting, further TDocs are created, mostly revisions of ones available before the meeting, but probably some brand new ones too – for example, outgoing liaison statements. These are uploaded to the meeting server, but (until recently) may or may not be uploaded to the public server during the meeting. (Since 2014, for most meetings, meeting server contents have been mirrored to a folder on the public server, but these copies are deleted shortly after the end of the meeting.)

Soon after the end of the meeting – same day, or at worst within a few days – the TDocs created during the meeting are uploaded by the secretary to the public server. Occasionally, some matters from the meeting cannot be resolved until maybe one week later, and these might result in some very late TDocs which are produced well after the end of the meeting, and thus uploaded onto the public server correspondingly late.

When the secretary copies from the meeting server (or from his own PC) to the public server, he may opt to only copy the missing files (i.e. the new ones), which is the best approach; or he may decide to overwrite everything and thus do a complete refresh of the files on the public server, which will now get an upload date/time-stamp of the new upload. This latter approach is now deprecated but has sometimes happened; you can detect this most easily when a meeting shows the same date/time-stamp for all TDoc files.

In cases such as this, one has to descend to greater subterfuge to narrow down the likely “public availability” moment. The zip file for a TDoc typically contains a Word file which has a particular date/time-stamp, which puts an absolute limit on the earliest moment that the TDoc could have become available in that form.

Searching the group’s email exploder archive (http://list.etsi.org/scripts/wa.exe?INDEX) on or about the suspected production date gleaned from the file date/time-stamp may well reveal the message in which the TDoc was first distributed, or perhaps the message by which the group’s secretary announced that it was available on the server. Note however that this technique does not reveal any earlier versions of the TDoc which might have been circulated, either as draft versions of the identified TDoc or as other Tdocs which were ultimately revised into the actual TDoc of interest. In order to identify this latter case, it is necessary to refer to the official secretary’s report of the meeting, where the train of revisions will be evident.

Is it possible to determine the date and time of publication of a particular version of a 3GPP Spec?

During the drafting phase (versions lower than 3.0.0), 3GPP TSs and TRs ("Specs") are under the control of their authors ("rapporteurs") and are handled like normal meeting contributions (see above). Revised versions incorporating text agreed by the responsible working group are often made available by the rapporteur via the group's email exploder shortly after the end of the meeting at which such text was discussed. Again, consultation of the exploder archives can reveal this. Alternatively, a revised draft may be sent directly to the 3GPP Support Team, and it will be uploaded to the public file server (specs archive directory) shortly afterwards. Again, the time stamp of the Zip file can be relied upon to indicate when the upload occurred.

After formal approval by the TSG (versions 3.0.0 or greater), Specs are edited only by the Support Team. The first approved version is based upon the draft version formally approved by the TSG, and thereafter versions are generated whenever Change Requests are approved by the TSG. These versions are made available shortly after the TSG meeting at which such approval occurred. The date (year and month) shown at the top of the Spec's cover page indicates either the date of (the last day of) the meeting, or the month in which the new version was prepared. However a more precise indication of the date of availability can be obtained from the Spec's web page (via the table at http://www.3gpp.org/specifications/) where a precise date is shown in the "available" column.

More information on the procedures relating to Spec handing can be found in 3GPP TR 21.900.

Note that, in accordance with the statement at the foot of the cover page of all 3GPP Specs, 3GPP does not "publish" its Specs per se. Formal publication is the responsibility of the individual Standards Development Organizations which comprise the Organizational Partners of 3GPP. For further information, see http://www.3gpp.org/specifications/63-official-publications.

What formalities do I have to go through to get type approval for terminal equipment in Europe? Is there a single point of contact? What standards does my equipment need to conform to in order that I can place it on the market?

The legal requirements for the marketing of electrical products in Europe are governed by various EU Directives, depending on the nature of the equipment. Conformity with any of these Directives can be demonstrated by the use of Harmonized Standards, whose title has been cited in the Official Journal of the European Union. The lists of relevant standards can be found on the Commission web site which can be accessed via http://www.newapproach.org/Directives/DirectiveList.asp.

General electrical equipment is covered by the EMC Directive & Low Voltage Directives, see http://ec.europa.eu/enterprise/sectors/electrical/documents/index_en.htm.
The harmonized standards are listed at http://ec.europa.eu/enterprise/policies/european-standards/harmonised-standards/index_en.htm
More general information on procedures to declare conformity and how equipment should be marked are contained on the web sites related to the two Directives.

Radio Equipment and Telecommunications Terminal Equipment is covered by the Radio and Telecommunications Terminal Equipment Directive, see http://ec.europa.eu/enterprise/policies/european-standards/harmonised-standards/rtte/index_en.htm, which also includes a link to the one-stop procedure for "placing on the market" (http://ec.europa.eu/enterprise/sectors/rtte/documents/guidance/one-stop-procedure_en.htm).

Further information on EU harmonized standards relevant to telecommunications can be found on the ETSI site at http://www.etsi.org/standards/looking-for-an-etsi-standard/list-of-harmonized-standards, and the published standards themselves can be downloaded via http://pda.etsi.org/pda/queryform.asp.

Where can I find a list of technical terms and abbreviations used in 3GPP documents?

Individual terms are defined in each 3GPP Technical Specification and Technical Report. A compendium of terms and abbreviations can be found in 3GPP TR 21.905. ETSI maintains a list of all terms and abbreviations defined in its publications in "TEDDI".

What is the difference between a SIM and a USIM? What is a UICC?

The Universal Integrated Circuit Card (UICC) is the removable card bearing a silicon chip which holds 3GPP system subscriber information. The UICC is a general purpose card having both non-volatile memory and a general-purpose processor. Thus while it is used, in a 3GPP terminal, to hold (U)SIM information / applications, it is can also be used for other purposes, possibly unrelated to telecommunications. A common use of UICCs is in the well-known credit card format, and there is no reason why a single card could not hold (U)SIM functionality in addition to electronic purse / credit card functionality, or indeed any other application / data.

The Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) is the collection of functions which personalize a 3GPP terminal. The SIM contains static information about the services subscribed to, the phone number, the identity of the home network, a list of preferred roaming networks, and so on. The SIM also contains storage capacity for the subscriber’s contacts’ phone numbers. The term "SIM" is often misused for "UICC". The SIM concept was created during the early development of the GSM standards, and second-generation (based on GERAN) terminals up to and including Release 4 use SIM functionality.

For third generation systems (based on UTRAN), more complex functionality was called for, and the SIM evolved into the USIM or Universal Subscriber Identity Module. Release 99 3rd generations onwards use USIMs rather than SIMs. From Release 5 onwards, both second and third generation terminals use USIMs (though to maintain backwards compatibility with older networks and terminals, later Release 2nd generation USIMs are likely to implement Rel-4 SIM functionality in addition to Rel-5 or later USIM functionality).

For further information on the 3GPP Release system, see the Release page.

I have transferred a video file from my phone to my PC. Where can I find a player for 3gp files?

The 3gp file format is defined in 3GPP TS 26.244 and in 3GPP TS 26.412. However, 3GPP has not defined a specific decoder. Your phone manufacturer may have supplied a player (check the CD-ROM which came with your phone) or look on its web site. Alternatively, search the Internet: a number of commercial players exist, and trial versions of some may be downloaded without charge.

Where can I find the specification of the SIM Lock feature?

In clause 8 of 3GPP TS 22.022.

What is the meaning of the text at the foot of the TS/TR cover page?

The present document has been developed within the 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP TM) and may be further elaborated for the purposes of 3GPP..
The present document has not been subject to any approval process by the 3GPPOrganizational Partners and shall not be implemented.
This Specification is provided for future development work within 3GPPonly. The Organizational Partners accept no liability for any use of this Specification.
Specifications and Reports for implementation of the 3GPP TM system should be obtained via the 3GPP Organizational Partners' Publications Offices.


3GPP is not a legally incorporated body, and its technical work is conducted under the auspices of its Organizational Partners, each of which transposes relevant 3GPP specifications as its own publications. Thus the "raw" 3GPP TSs and TRs have no legal status per se. Under an agreement with the ITU at the time 3GPP was created, the ITU would not publish the output of 3GPP but would make reference to the publications of the participating Organizational Partners from its Recommendations; this state of affairs accounts for the text found on the cover of each 3GPP TS and TR. More information can be found here.

 


 

Revision histoory:

2016-11-16: Correction of minor typo. (JMM)

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