15 Industry Leaders to Create Standard

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Fifteen Industry Leaders to Create Standard for Bringing Internet-Based Services to the Networked Home

Open Service Gateway Specification Will Enable Vast New Business Opportunities for Internet Service Providers, Network Operators and Equipment Manufacturers

REDWOOD SHORES, Calif., March 1, 1999. Fifteen leading technology companies today announced a new alliance to create and maintain the Open Service Gateway specification, the industry’s first open interface for connecting consumer and small business appliances with Internet services. The Open Service Gateway specification will be designed to provide a common foundation for Internet service providers (ISPs), network operators and equipment manufacturers to deliver a wide range of Internet services to gateway servers running in the home or remote office.

Alcatel, Cable & Wireless, Electricit de France, Enron Communications, Ericsson, IBM, Lucent Technologies, Motorola, Network Computer, Inc., Nortel Networks, Oracle Corporation, Philips Electronics, Sun Microsystems, Sybase, and Toshiba intend to jointly define the Open Service Gateway specification to allow the consolidation and management of voice, data and multimedia communications to and from the home. The specification will also be designed to provide secure wireless or wired links between high-value home services-such as security, energy management, emergency healthcare and electronic commerce services-and the computer systems of external computer networks and Internet service providers.

With the Open Service Gateway specification, service providers and software vendors will be able to depend upon a standardized software environment for residential, small office/home office and remote environments. Through this effort, the alliance is creating standards for the delivery, installation, deinstallation and management of applications – opening vast new markets for Internet service and software developers.

Now, even homes without traditional desktop computers can look forward to deriving benefit from Internet connectivity. As consumers see easy access to a much broader array of home and small office services — from home alarm, medical alert, food service delivery, intercom, telephony services and others — demand, just as on the Internet, for these value-added services will dramatically increase.

By writing to the Open Service Gateway specification’s Java technology-based environment, service providers and vendors traditionally faced with inflexible dedicated systems development will be able to leverage the infrastructure of the Internet while drawing from the resources of the millions of Java software and Internet developers worldwide.

About the Open Service Gateway Specification

Based entirely on Java technology, the Open Service Gateway specification will give service providers, device makers and appliance manufacturers vendor-neutral Local Area Network (LAN) to Wide Area Network (WAN) connectivity interfaces. Because of the portability of Java technology, application programmers will be able to write the application once to run on any device or network that supports the specification.

The Open Service Gateway specification will be comprised of separate functional elements: Application framework and resource management; Client APIs for thin and fat WAN clients; device APIs for local area network; Security and integrity APIs; and Data management APIs for database integration administration.

The specification will be designed to complement and enhance virtually all residential networking standard and initiatives, such as Bluetooth, CAL, CEBus, HAVi, HomePNA, HomePnP, HomeRF, Jini technology, LonWorks and VESA. In the same way, the specification will leverage the value of existing wireline and wireless networks while providing flexibility towards WCDMA, ADSL, cable and other high speed access technologies.

The participating companies intend to develop the Open Services Gateway specification under the new “Java Community Process,” a collaborative and auditable procedure for defining new Java APIs.

The first step in this process will be the submission of the Java Specification Request to define the Open Service Gateway specification. A draft specification is expected to be posted for public review in mid-1999.

More information about the Open Service Gateway specification is available at https://www.osgi.org.

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Christophe Lachnitt
33 (0)1 40 76 12 19
[email protected]

Mark Burnworth