FAQs

Q. What is the Telecom Infra Project? 

A. The Telecom Infra Project (TIP) is a global community of companies, organizations, and institutions. They’re working together to accelerate the development and deployment of open, disaggregated, and standards-based technology solutions.

Q. Why is the Telecom Infra Project necessary?

A. The growth of global connectivity has led to extraordinary progress. But nearly half of the world’s population still doesn’t have internet access. For many who do, their connection quality doesn’t provide reliable ways to communicate with others—nor remote working capabilities, access online education, or stream entertainment.

As the digital economy grows – driven by the multitude of consumer and commercial benefits provided by the internet, demand for greater connectivity continues to rise. However, a lack of flexibility in the current solutions, exacerbated by a limited choice in technology providers, makes it challenging for operators to efficiently build and upgrade networks.

TIP seeks to turn this around. With the entire industry working together, it’s accelerating the development and deployment of open, disaggregated, and standards-based solutions. The goal is to create a more diverse technology supply chain that delivers high quality connectivity that the world needs – now and in the decades to come.

Q. How was TIP founded?

A. TIP was founded by Deutsche Telekom, Intel, Facebook, Nokia, and SK Telecom in 2016. Its diverse membership now includes hundreds of member companies – from service providers and technology partners to systems integrators and other connectivity stakeholders.

Q. How does TIP function? 

A. TIP is a non-profit entity, formed by industry to support the industry. Its focus is on developing and deploying technology to advance global connectivity. It’s led by a board of directors representing leading companies.

TIP is committed to listening to our service provider members and other ecosystem members to:

  • understand their needs

  • identify gaps the industry isn’t addressing
    and that match the TIP mission

The community proposes or defines specific use cases. It recommends the formation of project groups where members collaborate on solutions. In support of them, TIP’s technical committee plays an important role in identifying a forward path and removing barriers, thus ensuring a clear path to success. 

Specifically, TIP is composed of several interlocking elements and works as follows:

  • It spans all areas of the telecom network: access, transport, and core and services. Project groups focus on specific technology verticals. They work to identify key problems, propose solutions, and build the technology that addresses identified problems. 

  • Solutions developed by project groups are tested and validated in lab environments through:

    • TIP Community Labs – Physical spaces facilitate collaboration between project group members to build and test solutions

    • PlugFests – Solutions are 1) tested in an end-to-end environment composed of multiple interoperable network elements, and 2) verified for technical readiness.

  • Facilitated by members across many continents and for many use cases (be they ultra rural or dense urban), solutions are then tested in real-world scenarios: 

    • Field Trials – controlled, small-scale environments

    • Market Trials – larger, commercial environments

  • As mature technology becomes generally available and is ready to be deployed, it gets listed on the TIP Exchange. And it’s awarded badges signifying the levels of validation performed by the TIP community.

  • Constant feedback between project groups and members who are producing each technology stack piece leads to faster development cycles that address specific needs of operators.

 

Q: What are Birds-of-a-Feather (BoF)?

A. Usually held at a TIP event, BoF sessions are where TIP members and other industry professionals identify areas where innovative solutions are most needed. 

Q. Who can use TIP Community Labs?

A. Lab activities are sponsored by a TIP project group and approved by the technical committee. Any community member can participate with these projects and provide solutions or expertise.

Q. What is a TIP PlugFest?

A. PlugFests are where the community tests and validates TIP technologies in an end-to-end environment representative of service provider requirements. Solutions that are successfully validated also qualify for a TIP Exchange listing. 

Our PlugFest website lists a lineup.

Q. What is TIP Exchange? 

A. The TIP Exchange is a showcase of products and solutions validated by the member community. Here service providers can assess the range of technologies available for flexible and innovative connectivity.

TIP members can have solutions listed by demonstrating adherence to TIP specifications and requirements documents—in addition to interoperability requirements demonstrated in PlugFests, Community Labs trials, and field trials. Badges signify the achieved validation level of each listed solution.

Products are not sold directly on the Exchange. Rather, it lists product details as well as contact information for each solution provider. 

Q. How do I become a TIP member?

A. Find out more about how to become a TIP member.