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Radio and telecommunications terminal equipment (R&TTE)

Other guidance documents on the Directive 1999/5/EC

Guidance on Interface Notification by Member States

Description of issue

Under Article 4.2 of Directive 1999/5/EC pdf български (bg) czech (cs) dansk (da) Deutsch (de) eesti (et) ελληνικά (el) español (es) Français (fr) Gaeilge (ga) hrvatski (hr) italiano (it) latviešu (lv) lietuvių (lt) magyar (hu) Malti (mt) Nederlands (nl) polski (pl) português (pt) română (ro) slovenčina (sk) slovenščina (sl) suomi (fi) svenska (sv) , each Member State shall notify the types of interface offered in that State by operators of public telecommunications networks. The directive does not specify:

  • the level of detail, or the timing, of these notifications.

The guidance given below is derived from the work of an Ad Hoc Group, and takes account of comments made at meetings of the Telecommunications Conformity Assessment and Market Surveillance Committee (TCAM), in which Member States assist the Commission in the management of the Directive.

Guidance

  1. Article 4.2 pdf български (bg) czech (cs) dansk (da) Deutsch (de) eesti (et) ελληνικά (el) español (es) Français (fr) Gaeilge (ga) hrvatski (hr) italiano (it) latviešu (lv) lietuvių (lt) magyar (hu) Malti (mt) Nederlands (nl) polski (pl) português (pt) română (ro) slovenčina (sk) slovenščina (sl) suomi (fi) svenska (sv) should contain information in sufficient detail to identify the high level classification of the interface and allow broad equivalence of interfaces to be established. The term "equivalence" is meant to imply that the functional characteristics of interfaces are similar, any variations being minor differences of detailed parameters which might either be encompassed within a single realisation, or provided for by configuration processes. A possible classification of fixed network interfaces is Annexed. This classification is not intended to imply anything relating to Essential Requirements, but might in future be used as a super set of Equipment Class Identifiers.
  1. These notifications should be made when the relevant interface is provided and not in advance, as is the case with the interface publication by the Public Network Operators.
  1. Article 4.1 pdf български (bg) czech (cs) dansk (da) Deutsch (de) eesti (et) ελληνικά (el) español (es) Français (fr) Gaeilge (ga) hrvatski (hr) italiano (it) latviešu (lv) lietuvių (lt) magyar (hu) Malti (mt) Nederlands (nl) polski (pl) português (pt) română (ro) slovenčina (sk) slovenščina (sl) suomi (fi) svenska (sv) .

Annex: Guidance on classification of fixed network interfaces

  1. PSTN/ISDN
  • Analogue single line
  • Analogue multi-line (with/without DDI)
  • ISDN Basic Rate
  • ISDN Primary Rate
  • ISDN U interface
  • Broadband ISDN ATM interfaces
  • Centrex interfaces
  • Virtual Private Network interfaces
  1. Leased Lines/Transport
  • 2w and 4w analogue leased lines (baseband)
  • 2w and 4w analogue leased lines (voiceband)
  • Digital leased lines
  • SDH bearer interfaces
  • Optical interfaces
  1. Data interfaces
  • X25
  • X21
  • TCP/IP
  • IEEE 802.x interfaces (e.g. Ethernet, Token Ring, SMDS)
  • Frame Relay
  1. Broadcast interfaces
  • Unswitched vision/sound
  • Switched vision/sound
  1. Telex Interfaces
  • Single line
  • Multi-line
  1. Indirect Access "interfaces" (deltas for indirect access services)
  1. Specialised interfaces for Value Added Services (e.g. Voicemail)
  1. Special Network Access interfaces

Note: If classifications are used to assist in defining Essential Requirements, it may also be useful to take account of the medium used to deliver the service, e.g. copper, fibre or radio. However, where multiple means of delivery are used, terminal users will not be in a position to know what actual medium is employed, so terminals will need to comply with the "worst case".

Recommended template for notifications of Telecommunication Interfaces by Public Network Operators in accordance with Article 4(2) of the R&TTE Directive

Template rtf - 157 KB [157 KB]

Guidance on Interface Publication by Public Telecommunications Network Operators

Description of issue

Under Article 4.2 of Directive 1999/5/EC pdf български (bg) czech (cs) dansk (da) Deutsch (de) eesti (et) ελληνικά (el) español (es) Français (fr) Gaeilge (ga) hrvatski (hr) italiano (it) latviešu (lv) lietuvių (lt) magyar (hu) Malti (mt) Nederlands (nl) polski (pl) português (pt) română (ro) slovenčina (sk) slovenščina (sl) suomi (fi) svenska (sv) , Member States shall ensure that operators of public telecommunication networks publish information on the types of interface offered in that Member State. The directive does not specify:

  • which operators should be subject to the obligation to publish
  • which types of interface are covered;
  • what degree of detail should be published;
  • the timing of publication;
  • the handling of existing, new, modified and withdrawn interfaces.

The guidance given below is derived from the work of an Ad Hoc Group, and takes account of comments made at meetings of the Telecommunications Conformity Assessment and Market Surveillance Committee (TCAM), in which Member States assist the Commission in the management of the Directive.

Guidance

  1. Operators subject to the obligation to publish

1.1. Direct operators: The Directive states that operators of public telecommunication networks must publish. This means anyone providing publicly available telecommunications services over a network to which terminal equipment can be connected, either via a fixed network terminating point or an air interface for radio terminals. Throughout this guide the term Public Network Operator (PNO) is used to describe these operators.

1.2. It does not include private networks or operators providing non-public services, such as to a limited group of end-users.

1.3. Indirectly connected operators: However, it should include Public Network Operators who provide services under contract to customers but who do not themselves provide the direct interface to the terminal equipment. There are various cases to be considered, including connections using unbundled local copper loops, private circuits and switched access. Annex 1 shows the configurations of such operators, who would have to publish relevant interworking specifications that impact on terminal design and operation.

1.4.Service providers: It should be noted that terminal equipment design may require details of features and functions of indirectly connected Public Service Providers, as well as Public Network Operators, but the former providers are not covered by the Directive. For the purposes of this guide, the term "Public Service Provider" (PSP) means a provider of publicly available telecommunications service(s) who provides service from one or more sets of apparatus connected to a Public Network, but does not itself operate a network. It is recommended that NRAs should encourage Public Service Providers to publish interface specifications wherever possible. Where publication does not occur, this may, however, be a matter for existing national regulations or Competition Law.

  1. Types of interface covered

2.1. In principle all types of publicly available interface should be published. This includes both switched and non-switched interfaces. It includes interfaces for leased lines, telephony, ISDN, data, telex and other non-voice services. It includes both fixed and radio interfaces, including publicly available satellite services.

2.2. It does not include internal interfaces within networks, or interconnect interfaces with other operators. It does not cover interfaces of private networks.

2.3. It does not cover interfaces of non-Public Network Operators or Service Providers, that is, interfaces provided solely to a limited number of closed user groups, but does include interfaces such as Centrex and Virtual Private Networks commonly provided by Public Network Operators to customers on request.

2.4. Public Network Operators with Significant Market Power must provide special network access under the terms of Article 16 of the Revised Voice Telephony Directive (98/10/EC). These interfaces should also be published.

  1. Degree of detail to be published

3.1. The Directive says that sufficient details must be published to permit the design of terminal equipment to be capable of using all the services provided through the corresponding interface. As discussed in section 1 paragraph 3 above, this objective can only be fully achieved if indirectly connected Public Network Operators also publish specifications - and perhaps Public Service Providers as well, as mentioned in section 1 paragraph 4 although they are not obliged to do this.

3.2. It has been questioned whether the Directive could be interpreted as requiring all details of value added services offered through the interface to be published, but this is not seen as being in all cases realistic or proportionate. However, in addition to basic conveyance services, it is felt important that supplementary services or tele-services that are directly controlled by the Public Network Operators should be published. (See Part 3 paragraph 7 of these guidelines)

3.3. Additionally, there may be some details that should not be freely published, such as details of encryption systems used to secure radio-based communications such as GSM and service features that may relate to lawful interception. These details should only be made available subject to non-disclosure agreements.

3.4. It is also recognised that some terminal functionality can be supplied by the Public Network Operator or Service Provider direct to the end-user in the form of software. In some cases, it may be downloaded directly to the terminal over the network. In such cases, the terminal manufacturer may not need to know the precise details of the service, only that it assumes the provision of a particular Operating System (e.g. Windows) or an Applications Programming Interface (API). It is noted that the functionality of the terminal can be significantly altered by such software changes and this might change the conformity to any Essential Requirements. It would be desirable to limit such downloads to cases where they can be controlled by the Public Network Operator or supplier/manufacturer, so no unintended alterations can be made. Member States are advised that it may not be appropriate to apply Article 9 pdf български (bg) czech (cs) dansk (da) Deutsch (de) eesti (et) ελληνικά (el) español (es) Français (fr) Gaeilge (ga) hrvatski (hr) italiano (it) latviešu (lv) lietuvių (lt) magyar (hu) Malti (mt) Nederlands (nl) polski (pl) português (pt) română (ro) slovenčina (sk) slovenščina (sl) suomi (fi) svenska (sv) of the directive in those cases where it is the end-user that causes the apparatus to no longer conform to the essential requirements. In cases where some functionality of the terminal is defined by software supplied by the PNO, there need be no detailed declaration by the PNO of this functionality. Only the mechanism for downloading needs to be declared.

3.5. In many cases, the publications will refer out to published standards. Where this is not possible, PNOs should base the content of what should be published on such guidance as is available (see section 7).

  1. Timing of publication

4.1. Article 4.2 pdf български (bg) czech (cs) dansk (da) Deutsch (de) eesti (et) ελληνικά (el) español (es) Français (fr) Gaeilge (ga) hrvatski (hr) italiano (it) latviešu (lv) lietuvių (lt) magyar (hu) Malti (mt) Nederlands (nl) polski (pl) português (pt) română (ro) slovenčina (sk) slovenščina (sl) suomi (fi) svenska (sv) of the Directive states that accurate and adequate technical interface specifications must be published before services provided through those interfaces are made publicly available. Recital 24 pdf български (bg) czech (cs) dansk (da) Deutsch (de) eesti (et) ελληνικά (el) español (es) Français (fr) Gaeilge (ga) hrvatski (hr) italiano (it) latviešu (lv) lietuvių (lt) magyar (hu) Malti (mt) Nederlands (nl) polski (pl) português (pt) română (ro) slovenčina (sk) slovenščina (sl) suomi (fi) svenska (sv) states that the purpose of such publication is to enable manufacturers to design terminal equipment. Therefore the adequacy of such specifications will depend, amongst other things, on whether there was sufficient advance publication before service launch to allow manufacturers to design equipment. However, recognising that the Terminals Directives have always related to placing equipment on the market, it is considered that the term design should here be taken to include manufacturing, testing, and other aspects of placing the equipment on the market.

4.2. This raises a number of important tensions. For PNOs, on the one hand, early interface publication will encourage a healthy terminal market for their planned new services. On the other hand, early publication might provide information that will forewarn competing PNOs of those new services. A long advance publication period would also have the effect of delaying innovation in the market place. Public Network Operators may be motivated therefore to arrange for the supply of suitable terminal equipment from one or a limited number of terminal suppliers who are made subject of a confidentiality agreement concerning the new service. This might have the effect of restricting competition in the terminal equipment. This can be said to contravene the principle of equal, transparent and non-discriminatory treatment of technical specifications, as set out in Recital 25 pdf български (bg) czech (cs) dansk (da) Deutsch (de) eesti (et) ελληνικά (el) español (es) Français (fr) Gaeilge (ga) hrvatski (hr) italiano (it) latviešu (lv) lietuvių (lt) magyar (hu) Malti (mt) Nederlands (nl) polski (pl) português (pt) română (ro) slovenčina (sk) slovenščina (sl) suomi (fi) svenska (sv) . Where a Public Network Operator shares information in a discriminatory manner, this may breach the competition rules of the Treaty.

4.3. Therefore, advance publication is usually in the terminal manufacturers' interest and therefore in users' interests too, but less so for the Public Network Operators', and a balance needs to be struck between the interests of all market players.

4.4. There are several approaches to this problem that might meet the requirement of Recital 25 pdf български (bg) czech (cs) dansk (da) Deutsch (de) eesti (et) ελληνικά (el) español (es) Français (fr) Gaeilge (ga) hrvatski (hr) italiano (it) latviešu (lv) lietuvių (lt) magyar (hu) Malti (mt) Nederlands (nl) polski (pl) português (pt) română (ro) slovenčina (sk) slovenščina (sl) suomi (fi) svenska (sv) to 'ensure that the regulatory framework created by this Directive is fair'. Guidelines could be published by the Commission, in conjunction with TCAM, or by national regulators or competition authorities. In some cases, national regulations may already be relevant, particularly those implementing previous Directives which have publication requirements, such as 98/10/EC (The Revised Voice Telephony Directive). Whatever method is used, any rules or guidelines should be published. Where a service is to be launched across several Member States, there are strong arguments for consistent treatment of publication rules across all Member States.

4.5. Without prejudice to competition law, the following issues might be taken into account:

  • Whether an adequate supply of terminal equipment already exists or can be readily modified
  • Whether an adequate supply of terminal equipment is likely to emerge due to participation in earlier trials or R&D activities
  • Whether the interface is based on a published standard, particularly an ETSI standard
  • Whether the interface is based on a proprietary specification for which one manufacturer might have prior or exclusive knowledge
  • Whether there are any conflicts from one or more terminal manufacturers also supplying network equipment to the PNO
  • Whether the interface is for a service which is likely to be a mass-market service, as opposed to a specialised service which might not be expected to attract many terminal suppliers
  • Different conditions need to apply to cases where an existing interface is modified or withdrawn. Shorter notice periods may be appropriate than those for new interfaces
  • The impact that publication periods might have on innovation in the market by delaying customers' access to a new service
  • The need for rapid modification of interfaces to correct errors, where there is no negative impact on terminal equipment
  • Interfaces provided as Special Network Access are initially provided reactively to service providers' requests and may not be able to be published until the interface has been provided
  • The position of the Network Terminating Point may need to be taken into account: a novel interface may lead to difficulties in stimulating the production of matching terminal equipment, so adoption of a different, perhaps existing, NTP may, for a period, lead to a successful service launch.

4.6. Because the situation is complex, a single period of advance publication will not be appropriate. It might be concluded that each case should be considered on its merits, but this could lead to uncertainties for both PNO and terminal suppliers. Flexible rules or guidelines may be preferable. Not all the issues can be left to general competition rules, since, if this were the case, there would be no need for the R&TTE Directive or sector specific rules at all.

4.7. However, Member States and NRAs should ensure that any national rules or guidelines are published and represent a fair balance between the interests of PNOs, PSPs, terminal manufacturers, terminal suppliers, users and other market players; and are consistent with the competition rules of the Treaty, and also with these guidelines.

4.8. Some regulations already exist in some Member States as a result of earlier ONP Directives that contain publication obligations, e.g. 98/10/EC. One approach is to require a defined period of advance notification but with the NRA having the power to waive or reduce the period if the individual case merits it. This provides a degree of certainty with flexibility.

4.9. Another approach is to oblige the PNO to publish in adequate time for manufacturers to react. This places the onus on the operator to judge what is fair and act accordingly, which is comparable to the situation under general competition law. This can be supplemented by requiring a defined minimum period, together with the power to waive or reduce this minimum period, as above.

4.10. Other approaches that attempt to reflect all the issues described above are possible, but given the desirability of handling some cases on their particular merits, it may not be worthwhile developing a complex set of rules to meet all eventualities.

4.11. One possibility would be for publications to be made to terminal manufacturers only and be subject of a non-disclosure agreement until the service is launched. This has some obvious advantages, but some drawbacks too. It could lead to different PNOs proposing different interface standards and thereby fragmenting the market for terminal equipment. The view is taken that operators with market power in the relevant market for a given interface should not be able to use such agreements, even if any non-disclosure agreement was supervised by the NRA.

4.12. To sum up, the view is taken that those aspects of the network interface that affect terminal design should preferably be developed in an open forum, and that competition should focus instead on matters such as speed, added value, and quality of service delivered to customers. In this context the timing of interface publication becomes less of an issue. In ensuring proper publication, NRAs should take account of the factors given above. The NRAs may co-operate in determining a maximum period in advance of service provision that could be imposed for the publication of interface details. If no such agreement is reached, a period of one year, as suggested by some Member States. In applying the factors given above to specific cases, the NRA can reduce the period as may seem appropriate, provided that the rules or guidelines for doing so are non-discriminatory and publicly available. In no case can the period be reduced beyond zero - in other words, the publication of accurate and adequate technical specifications of such interfaces must always be made before services provided through those interfaces are made publicly available.

  1. Handling of existing, new, modified and withdrawn interfaces

The wording of the Directive is slightly ambiguous concerning the treatment of existing interfaces, as opposed to new interfaces. However, both existing and new interfaces need to be published. In the case of existing interfaces, NRAs should determine a suitable period after the Directive comes into force during which specifications of existing interfaces should be published. Modified interfaces should also be published, where matching changes to terminal equipment are required, and, to ensure that the list of specifications is kept up to date, any interfaces that are withdrawn also need to be notified and should follow the timing procedures and/or guidelines for new interfaces. There are two possible stages of withdrawal that may be relevant. Firstly, the cessation of 'new supply', which means manufacturers may no longer need to supply new terminal equipment and secondly, the final withdrawal of existing service, which may imply no further need to support the interface.

  1. Relationship with publication obligations under other Directives

There are already publication obligations under existing EC Directives, in particular the Revised Voice Telephony Directive [RVTD] (98/10/EC). The objectives and audience for these publications and those under the R&TTE Directive are slightly different. The RVTD addresses issues of transparency in the market for telecommunications terminal equipment and calls on NRAs to consult with consumer groups as well as manufacturers. In contrast, the R&TTE Directive addresses the need of manufacturers to have sufficient details of interfaces so that they may be able to construct and test terminal equipment. Differing levels of detail may thus be required. A single publication by PNOs to meet both sets of obligations may be acceptable as long as the specifications are readily understandable by consumers or their representatives.

  1. Guidance on contents of Interface specifications

The Ad Hoc Group recommended that three guidance documents be produced, covering analogue, digital, and radio interfaces. However, it was recognised that further work will be needed on these and that they should be owned and maintained by ongoing groups with the appropriate expertise. The Ad Hoc Group proposed a task group to be set up to run under the control of TCAM.. It should be supported by ETSI EP ATA and ETSI EP DTA (with support from SPS) for the analogue and digital guidance documents and ETSI TC ERM for the radio interface guidance document (except frequency allocation issues, which fall outside ETSI). If such group would be established, it should report to the Commission and TCAM.

  1. Protection of the Network

During discussion of the problem of self-protection mechanisms at network interfaces, concern was expressed about a possible mismatch between the rights and obligations of Public Network Operators as expressed in Article 7.5 pdf български (bg) czech (cs) dansk (da) Deutsch (de) eesti (et) ελληνικά (el) español (es) Français (fr) Gaeilge (ga) hrvatski (hr) italiano (it) latviešu (lv) lietuvių (lt) magyar (hu) Malti (mt) Nederlands (nl) polski (pl) português (pt) română (ro) slovenčina (sk) slovenščina (sl) suomi (fi) svenska (sv) of the R&TTE-D and Article 13 of Directive 98/10/EC (The Revised Voice Telephony Directive). The issue will further be considered. However, regarding publication, it is clear that PNOs cannot be obliged to publish details of network self-protection mechanisms.

  1. Other advice relevant to the network interface to terminal equipment

9.1. It is important that the regulatory Network Terminating Point is defined at an appropriate place. Public Network Operators should use existing or standardised interfaces wherever possible and not provide proprietary interfaces unless the interface is entirely novel. This ensures that the market in the terminal equipment is as competitive as possible and not tied to one particular network. This is consistent with the harmonized technical interface principles of Open Network Provision, see Annex to Directive 90/387/EC, as revised.

9.2. The position of the NTP may affect the complexity and therefore the required timing of publication. The Ad Hoc Group considered that, in some cases, it may be appropriate to allow network terminating equipment at users' premises to remain part of the network, rather than being part of the terminal equipment. This may assist the development of the market in associated terminals, especially in the short term.

  1. Conclusions

10.1. The Guidance on Interface Publication by Public Telecommunications Network Operators is given above. In carrying out their tasks, NRAs should take notice of this Guidance, noting in particular:
- the need for a clear definition of the interfaces offered, and the obligation on PNOs to publish in all cases, including existing, new, modified and withdrawn interfaces, as in section 5 above,
- the possibility of mandating PNO publication of interface details sufficiently in advance of services being provided through those interfaces as to be considered by the NRA as adequate in view of the considerations given in section 4 paragraph 5 above,
- the desirability of consistent treatment of publication rules by NRAs where a service is to be launched across several Member States.

10.2. The Ad Hoc Group has suggested that a support group, with full industry participation, may be useful to the Commission and TCAM. Such a group could be tasked to develop EU harmonised guidelines on publication, guidance documents on interface specification contents, and advice on the effectiveness of the publications made by PNOs. This group could be supported by ETSI concerning maintenance of the guidance documents. The Commission is open to the establishment of such a group, which should report to the Commission and TCAM.

Annex 1 :  Indirect Public Network Operators who have an obligation to publish Interface Specifications pdf - 28 KB [28 KB]

Guidance for Public Network Operators when publishing interfaces, and NRAs/Member States when supervising such publication

Description of issue

Under Article 4.2 of Directive 1999/5/EC pdf български (bg) czech (cs) dansk (da) Deutsch (de) eesti (et) ελληνικά (el) español (es) Français (fr) Gaeilge (ga) hrvatski (hr) italiano (it) latviešu (lv) lietuvių (lt) magyar (hu) Malti (mt) Nederlands (nl) polski (pl) português (pt) română (ro) slovenčina (sk) slovenščina (sl) suomi (fi) svenska (sv) , Member States shall ensure that operators of public telecommunication networks publish information on the types of interface offered in that Member State. The directive does not specify:

  • appropriate practical considerations to be borne in mind by PNOs and NRAs.

The guidance given below is derived from the work of an Ad Hoc Group, and takes account of comments made at meetings of the Telecommunications Conformity Assessment and Market Surveillance Committee (TCAM), in which Member States assist the Commission in the management of the Directive.

Guidance

  1. Guidance pdf - 28 KB [28 KB] published by the European Commission concerning the publication of interfaces under the R&TTE Directive.
  1. Publication is required for each type of public network interface. Such interfaces include not only direct interfaces with terminal equipment (the Network Terminating Point), but also indirect interfaces where the Public Network Operator has a contractual relationship with end-users (different configurations are to be considered). In the case of indirect connection, only those details additional to the publication relating to the direct interface need be published, that is, the publication is a 'delta' to the direct interface publication.
  1. Specifications of existing interfaces, as well as new and modified interfaces, must be published in accordance with any published guidelines or rules produced by NRAs, national competition authorities or the Commission. The withdrawal of any existing published interface must be notified including, ideally, any phased withdrawal process.
  1. NRAs may specify guidelines or rules for appropriate lead-times for publication of existing, new and modified interfaces. These should be the minimum consistent with the need to allow manufacturers to design equipment, or to provide modified equipment in the case of modified interfaces. NRAs ought to take account of the need to promote innovation and competition in markets and should therefore allow shorter lead times where this can be justified. Further guidance for NRAs can be found above.
  1. Sufficient detail must be published to allow manufacturers to design, manufacture, test and place equipment on the market, including information concerning any Essential Requirements. "Templates" providing details of the expected content of analogue, digital and radio interfaces should be followed, when available.
  1. Interface publications may be produced using the Public Network Operator's own "house style" so long as the contents of the publication provide the same information as indicated in the templates. Clarity would be improved by cross-referencing to the template paragraph numbers and by using ETSI terminology wherever possible. There is no requirement to have a separate publication for each customer interface; it is recognised that where customer interfaces are very similar, it may be beneficial to have all of those interfaces in a single document. Similarly, it may be desirable to specify some characteristics which are common to a number of customer interfaces (e.g. tones and announcements) in a separate publication. The criteria for deciding how to document the technical characteristics of the customer interfaces should be based on clarity, removal of ambiguity, maintainability and ease of use for the users of these publications.
  1. Publications should contain sufficient information to permit the design of terminal equipment so that it can interwork with the public telecommunications network for the purpose of establishing, modifying, charging for, holding and clearing real or virtual connections and to meet all Essential Requirements. They should also contain details of any supplementary services or enhanced features provided by the network that is important for the design and operation of terminal equipment. The PNO should not exclude any information concerning interworking with the network that it is aware would be relevant to the design and operation of terminal equipment. Sufficient information must be published to allow manufacturers to test that their equipment conforms to the interface specification, including the relevant Essential Requirements. The level of detail should be comparable to that provided in harmonised standards covering essential requirements, excluding test specifications unless the test method needs to be declared in order to clarify the meaning of a given parameter.
  1. Interface publications should refer to published standards where available and specify any options, additions or modifications selected by the PNO within them. For example, ISDN PICS and PIXIT documents could be used where available. PNOs may refer out to other published company documentation for all or part of their interface publication, as long as such documentation defines the interface from the network rather than the terminal viewpoint. Where such references are made, the PNO should ensure that the same ease of access exists for the referenced document(s) as that applied to the interface publication.
  1. The PNO should ensure it does not knowingly publish in breach of any associated IPR and/or copyright. The PNO should at least consult the network equipment supplier. In so far as the PNO is aware of any relevant property rights, it should ensure that the publication contains a clear indication of:
  • any IPR and/or copyright asserted over the contents of the publication (including any specifications referred out to);
  • the rights granted and restrictions made to users of the specification; and;
  • how details of any licensing requirements associated with such IPR may be obtained.
  1. The language of publication is a matter for each Member State. NRAs are encouraged not to place onerous translation requirements on PNOs.
  1. Publications should be version controlled with a document history.
  1. It is recommended that PNOs should make publications available electronically, i.e. on the World Wide Web. NRAs or other bodies may create hyperlinks to individual publication sites and to similar sites in other Member States. Paper copies should be made available on request, for which the PNO may levy a reasonable charge.
  1. NRAs should promote the establishment of a national forum for the discussion of draft and published specifications with Public Network Operators, Public Service Providers, manufacturers and other interested parties, with the purpose of ensuring that publications conform to any relevant guidelines, meet the needs of terminal manufacturers and that the integrity of the network is maintained. Any such forum should take account of any harmonizing guidelines at the European level.
  1. NRAs should require PNOs to republish any specifications that are found to be inadequate for their intended purpose. Any such decision should be based on published rules or guidelines or the templates.

Commission Guidance to terminal manufacturers and suppliers concerning interface publication

Description of issue

Under Article 4.2 of Directive 99/5/EC pdf български (bg) czech (cs) dansk (da) Deutsch (de) eesti (et) ελληνικά (el) español (es) Français (fr) Gaeilge (ga) hrvatski (hr) italiano (it) latviešu (lv) lietuvių (lt) magyar (hu) Malti (mt) Nederlands (nl) polski (pl) português (pt) română (ro) slovenčina (sk) slovenščina (sl) suomi (fi) svenska (sv) , Member States shall ensure that operators of public telecommunication networks publish information on the types of interface offered in that Member State. The directive does not specify:

  • appropriate practical considerations to be borne in mind by terminal manufacturers and suppliers.

The guidance given below is derived from the work of an Ad Hoc Group, and takes account of comments made at meetings of the Telecommunications Conformity Assessment and Market Surveillance Committee (TCAM), in which Member States assist the Commission in the management of the Directive.

Guidance

  1. Terminal manufacturers and suppliers are encouraged to take part in any forum set up to discuss interface specifications.
  1. Terminal manufacturers and suppliers are encouraged to provide feedback on the adequacy of published specifications.
  1. Terminal manufacturers and suppliers should note that the purpose of the publication is to permit the design of terminals capable of functioning correctly. Assuming that the information published is adequate and accurate, the task of ensuring the interworking with and via the network rests with terminal manufacturers, as does the compliance to Essential Requirements. Statements relating to IPR or copyright in Interface publications may not be complete.
  1. Terminal manufacturers and suppliers should note that in a multi-operator environment, it will be prudent to consider the interface publications of several operators (including indirect access operators) before deciding what terminals might be suitable for a given market.

Under the terms of Article 6.3 of Directive 1999/5/EC pdf български (bg) czech (cs) dansk (da) Deutsch (de) eesti (et) ελληνικά (el) español (es) Français (fr) Gaeilge (ga) hrvatski (hr) italiano (it) latviešu (lv) lietuvių (lt) magyar (hu) Malti (mt) Nederlands (nl) polski (pl) português (pt) română (ro) slovenčina (sk) slovenščina (sl) suomi (fi) svenska (sv) , terminal manufacturers or suppliers provide information to users concerning the intended use and identification of interfaces for connection should, in addition to the possible use of familiar or branded names, refer to the PNOs' publications under Article 4.2 pdf български (bg) czech (cs) dansk (da) Deutsch (de) eesti (et) ελληνικά (el) español (es) Français (fr) Gaeilge (ga) hrvatski (hr) italiano (it) latviešu (lv) lietuvių (lt) magyar (hu) Malti (mt) Nederlands (nl) polski (pl) português (pt) română (ro) slovenčina (sk) slovenščina (sl) suomi (fi) svenska (sv) . A declaration of intended purpose is not itself a guarantee of interworking. It will be a matter of consumer protection and the courts to decide whether any such statements are misleading.

Guidance to manufacturers and suppliers concerning programmable equipment

Description of issue

The Commission Decision 2000/299/EC (6 April 2000) lists terminal and radio equipment operating in fully harmonised spectrum and which can be operated without a license ("Class-1") and other equipment ("Class 2") for which spectrum is largely harmonised. In order to clarify the classification of equipment, which can be programmed to use frequencies, which are not available in all Member States, a guidance has been developed.

Guidance

When placing programmable equipment on the market, manufacturers, authorised representative or persons responsible for their placing on the market shall pay careful attention to the classification system. Where equipment could be programmed by the user to operate on frequencies, that are not available or could only be used under special licensing conditions, they are classified as class 2. As a result the alert sign should be put on the equipment and the user manual should contain accurate information on the conditions of use of the equipment (as foreseen by article 6.3 pdf български (bg) czech (cs) dansk (da) Deutsch (de) eesti (et) ελληνικά (el) español (es) Français (fr) Gaeilge (ga) hrvatski (hr) italiano (it) latviešu (lv) lietuvių (lt) magyar (hu) Malti (mt) Nederlands (nl) polski (pl) português (pt) română (ro) slovenčina (sk) slovenščina (sl) suomi (fi) svenska (sv) of the Directive). Equipment, which the end user cannot easily reprogram (e.g. the programming mode is password protected, the casing of the equipment needs to be opened), and which is preconfigured by the manufacturer to operate as a Class 1 device, remains in Class 1. It is of course not the intention of the Directive, to declare a device a class 1 device and to instruct the end user through a separate path (e.g. internet) about the "tricks" to let it operate on other frequencies. Member States are likely to consider such as a breach of the Directive, which may result in a safeguard action or even a sales ban.

Radio interfaces - List of information elements in Radio Interfaces

A format has been developed in order to list information elements aiming at being an integrated frequency allocation table and definition of Radio Interfaces in the sense of art. 4(1) of the R&TTE (1999/5/EC) directive. Therefore parameters, which are covered by the Harmonised Standards (drafts or adopted) need not be included here. Under each information element there has been added remarks and explanations on the contents of this element. The list has been split in the normative part, which is strictly speaking the compulsory part of the Radio Interface, and in an informative part, which many administrations have chosen to include in their allocation tables or descriptions of regulated Radio Interfaces.

Normative part

1 Frequency band

The band limits are normally given as channel edges rather than centre frequencies of lowest and highest channels within the band.

2 Radiocommunications Service in accordance with the Table of Frequency Allocations of the Article S5 of the ITU-R Radio Regulations (RR)

Some national frequency allocation tables show in their leftmost column the RR allocation (using the ITU terminology) but here we mean the national selection of alternatives in the RR, which often is done by segmentation of the band between those different alternatives.

3 Description of allowed application(s) within the frequency band

In addition to the radio service it is in most cases necessary to use more specific terminology to define what kind of use is allowed within the band. This may even designate user groups, which only can get frequency assignments within the band. For the ERO EFIS project there will be prepared a harmonised hierarchical terminology for these applications. It is likely that to facilitate the maintenance of national information in this search tool database, the terminology also in national allocation tables (the English language version) will be harmonised as far as possible with this terminology.

4 Licensing regime

Typically three alternatives for this are used. If individual frequency assignment is required for use then an individual licence is always required but his may be the case also for some other reasons like for issuing call signs for radio stations or where it is necessary at least to know the users (registration). Exemption from individual licences is in some countries called a general licence or a class licence, if there is a need to give some general rules for the use of radio. In some other countries only the term licence exemption is used, even if this may also stipulate conditions for use. It can be foreseen that in the future also the selection method (first come first served, beauty contest etc) and licence fees or spectrum prising need to be described

5 Channel spacing and designation of emission in accordance with Article S2.7 of the radio regulations of ITU-R or description of modulation using other terms

In this field the type or types of allowed emissions are defined. In addition to channel spacing, also the exact centre or reference frequencies of emissions need to be defined.

6 Maximum transmit power limit

For equipment exempted from individual licences this is the maximum limit for radiated power (ERP or EIRP) from equipment. For individually licensed radio stations this can only be some generally applied upper limit, but also lower power values may be imposed in individual cases. To what extent will antenna patterns of satellite earth stations and fixed links become covered by Harmonised Standards?

7 Requirements for antenna directivity and polarisation characteristics

In particular for fixed links, satellite feeder links and broadcast transmitters it is in certain cases necessary to state requirements for antenna performance as a condition for a frequency assignment. Some of these requirements can be applied in all cases or at least in heavily congested areas. In some cases requirements are given for individual assignments to be able to achieve co-ordination with neighbouring countries. To some extent these antenna characteristics may be covered also by Harmonised Standards.

8 Duty cycle or channel access protocol

This kind of sharing methods can be imposed on equipment exempted from individual licences or on equipment used on individually licensed, but shared channels.

9 Duplex direction and separation (if applicable) or access method

This is relevant for frequency duplex systems only but also the other alternative simplex, TDMA or CDMA need to be included in the description.

10 Possible need for an operator's certificate

This is usually required for the operation of aeronautical, maritime and radio amateur stations. Information on the implementation of the CEPT mutual recognition arrangements would be useful.

11 Any other restrictions concerning the use of the band

This item could be used to define special geographical restrictions for the use of radio stations within a country (astronomical sites, airports, etc.).

12 Any planned or foreseen changes in the above items

Refarming schedules or decisions to open reserve bands could be given under this item. Also schedules to remove national deviations should be included.

13 Space for remarks

Informative part

14 Reference specification assumed to be fulfilled in frequency planning and defining the equipment type

The Harmonised Standards may not contain in all cases all the parameters used in interference calculations for new frequency assignments, used in international co-ordination or assumed in compatibility analysis. However these parameters define the product of the frequency manager, a protected frequency assignment. In investigation of occurred cases of interference the frequency management cannot help if equipment used do not comply with these assumptions.

15 Guidance on standards that can be used to comply with the essential requirements

Some countries have put references to existing ETSI standards as an informative part of their Radio Interfaces to bridge the gap before corresponding Harmonised Standards have become published for their references in the OJEU. Also after they are published it might be useful to associate the Radio Interfaces with their correct Harmonised Standards.

Guidance on compliance issued by the R&TTE Compliance Association

Summary of the TCAM 26 decision on sub-class 22

Application of the R&TTE Directive to indirectly connected equipment and to equipment with LAN Ports


Guidance on medical devices falling within the scope of the R&TTED and CE marking


 

 

 

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