Broadband Forum, prpl Foundation unite to create secure cross-platform CPE service delivery framework

July 16, 2021
Joint collaboration between the two industry organizations is extending USP to become the backbone of smart gateways that enable a broadband services ecosystem.
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"Service providers will benefit from greater agility, faster time-to-market, delivery of improved operational support and ultimately the ability to significantly enhance end-user experience" thanks to the latest announced collaboration between Broadband Forum and prpl Foundation.

The joint effort will help create a truly interoperable ecosystem of 3rd-party applications and services and allow Customer Premises Equipment (CPE) to be seamlessly upgraded with new innovative services, said the partners. The two industry organizations aim to enhance existing home gateway architecture platforms to enable service providers to more easily deploy, activate and manage portable 3rd-party applications and services, such as Wi-Fi analytics, security and more, onto Wi-Fi routers and home gateways.

Leveraging Broadband Forum’s User Services Platform (USP), the work seeks to open up new opportunities for service providers to deliver value to their subscribers. Per a statement, the expanded collaboration will explore how USP (TR-369) can be extended to enable “microservices” in home gateways, that will enhance customer experience by improving velocity of service delivery to app-enabled CPE such as Wi-Fi routers and gateways and meet the complexities of a modular firmware architecture.

“The Broadband Forum is very pleased to be joining forces with prpl Foundation to extend USP and the TR-181 Data Models to enable an ecosystem of 3rd-party applications and services,” Broadband Forum Chairman and BUS Work Area Director John Blackford said. “This ensures fast time-to-market of innovative solutions that are portable across a variety of different CPE platforms. The result will ensure service providers can quickly deliver more value to subscribers and improve overall customer experience.”

The prpl Foundation is collaborating with Broadband Forum in developing a high-level Application Programming Interface (API) that enables cross-platform portability of applications and services among different CPE, leveraging USP as its backbone. The collaboration enables the extension of the widely utilized TR-181 and USP open standards, building an open API and reference implementation to develop and deploy connected home and business services.

“This collaboration between Broadband Forum and prpl Foundation is uniting the industry by converging various CPE software platforms around a cross-platform service delivery framework,” said Leonard Dauphinee, President at prpl Foundation. “Without such convergence, it had become increasingly difficult to upgrade CPE with new innovative services such as parental controls, security solutions, and streaming services.”

The partners say their work leverages USP's standardized messaging and data models to allow local, real-time applications and services to interoperate with CPE execution environments, while securely and efficiently segmenting their data and configuration information to facilitate an open application ecosystem. This enables an architecture for organizations to develop and rapidly deploy new services and solutions for the connected end-user.

“This important collaboration brings together service providers, silicon providers, system integrators, platform vendors, 3rd-party application developers and open-source developers, all committed to developing a robust microservices architecture to enable service providers to differentiate and scale their business by quickly deploying new services, including services customized on a per subscriber basis,” Broadband Forum President Mike Talbert concluded.

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