|Press Release 12-15. April 1999, Turtle Bay Resort, Oahu,
Consortium (TINA-C) of 46 carriers, suppliers and technology companies meets in Hawaii
this month to present the telecom industry with a modern, forward-looking software
architecture to address ever-increasing customer demand for innovative new services.
The TINA Conference '99 will hear feedback from major
carriers such as Sprint Corp., NTT Corp., Deutsche Telekom and France Telecom about real
TINA deployments in their networks. Specialist manufacturers such as Expersoft, Iona, and
Starvision are expected to present their latest TINA-compliant products, and carriers will
present tough new requirements for the real-time control and management that only TINA can
"We believe TINA concepts and principles are
mainstream now. We're beginning to see some real products built to these
specifications," said Deb Guha, Chief Executive Officer, TINA-C.
After an initial day of tutorial and workshop sessions,
TINA '99 kicks off with panel discussions and technical paper presentations from Alcatel,
BT Labs, CSELT, Hewlett-Packard, Korea Telecom, Lucent Technologies and many others.
Subjects explored include the TINA Service Architecture; the integration of TINA with
legacy Intelligent Networks, agents for Advanced Telecom Services, and distributed billing
The conference will hear keynote speeches from Stagg
Newman, chief technologist at the Federal Communications Commission, and Thomas Rowbotham
of BT Labs. The concluding day and a half is set aside for a meeting of TINA-C members who
will hear reports from consortium Working Groups, discuss the latest research and
demonstrate products based on the TINA architecture.
"In the current telecom industry environment of rapid
mergers and equally rapid dissolution of alliances, TINA results are particularly useful
in helping cushion technology differences," said Hendrik Berndt, Chief Technology
"We need to deploy ubiquitous services level
over POTS, mobiles, and multimedia/voice over packet: the best approach is to port
intelligence from legacy networks to new networks through common call servers and common
Intelligent networks. TINA provides tools to make this decoupling of control and transport
", says Martine Lapierre, TINA-C President and Alcatel Switching and Routing Division
Deutsche Telekom and France Telecom will present the
conference with results of their joint project, SATIN (Software Architecture using TINA
for IN). The two carriers recently completed the design and implementation of a service
platform reaching across both their networks, integrating TINA concepts with their
existing Intelligent Network architectures.
NTT will also report on its work over the past three years
on integrating the TINA architecture into its network technologies in Japan.
US operator Sprint recently announced it will reengineer
its combined voice, data and video network, ION (Integrated On-demand Network),
incorporating TINA architecture and specifications. Representatives from Sprint will
describe a TINA-compliant provisioning system based on ATM, and explain how
standardization will help them better manage multivendor relationships.
"The biggest single issue for the TINA Consortium has
been 'when will it be real?' Sprint's ION announcement and projects like SATIN indicate
that the time is now," said Joe Sventek, General Chair of the Conference and
Hewlett-Packard's TINA-C Technical Forum member. "The industry has realized for some
time that more complex services require a more sophisticated control plane than that
provided by the Intelligent Network. TINA provides a conceptually clean platform and
appears to be ready for primetime."
Since its formation in 1993, TINA-C has developed sophisticated software specifications
addressing the urgent need to migrate networks from the 'switch-centric' model to a
Distributed Processing Environment (DPE). In the TINA model, intelligence is sited
increasingly at the edge of the telecom network. The TINA DPE concept builds on the
computer industry's research into distributed processing, applying it to a range of
network devices and user terminals. Ultimately, in the TINA model, even the humble
cellphone becomes an intelligent network device.
Now TINA-C is ready to promote its work aggressively by
bringing TINA products to the attention of the wider industry. By year-end 2000, the
Consortium aims to ensure the availability of large-scale deployments of TINA-compliant
products and TINA-based services.
The need for TINA
In a world already replete with a multitude of services, the addition of even more
sophisticated end products can be a nightmare for those who create, deploy and manage the
service - compounded by a tradition of legacy, multiple-vendor architecture.
In the face of the current rapid changes, there are several
questions to be answered: How can the industry harness the new technical opportunity? How
can it provide versatile multimedia services over the Internet and traditional telecom
networks? How can it keep in check the cost of creating, deploying and managing these
services? And, how can it incorporate flexibility in the service software for current and
future network technologies?
Many believe that a new approach is needed, but one which
can also interwork with existing systems and standards. The answer is to define a new
software architecture that capitalizes on the latest advances in computer and telecom
technologies, to rationalize complex software for services and network management. The
answer is TINA.
TINA is an object-oriented software architecture designed to separate high level
applications from the underlying physical telecom infrastructure.
Control and management functions that are normally sited at the switch are migrated onto
servers, using a unified TINA architecture based on a distributed processing environment
(DPE). This allows control and management features to be deployed flexibly within the
network, instead of being forced to reside on a particular system at particular
geographical locations. The TINA DPE can be based on the Common Object Request Broker
Architecture developed by the Object Management Group (OMG), which is a member of TINA-C,
and also runs over JAVA or DCOM at the terminal side. By migrating intelligence from the
core network to user terminals, TINA combines the distributed character of the Internet
with the inherent reliability, quality of service and security of telecom networks. When
integrated, these two technologies offer an unprecedented opportunity to enable versatile
multimedia and information services and to innovate the way these services are created and
A number of Reference Points are defined within TINA. These
provide for clear separation between the roles of each player in the industry (for
instance between retailer and consumer), enabling new entrants and established companies
to expand their businesses with maximum flexibility.
The TINA Consortium (TINA-C) was formed in 1993 by 40 telecom carriers, suppliers and
computer manufacturers as a co-operative body to define a common software architecture for
telecommunications. Since then, and through interaction with industry bodies such as the
Object Management Group, the ATM Forum, DAVIC, ITU-T and the TeleManagement Forum, TINA-C
has assisted the telecom industry in improving the way services are designed.
At the end of 1997, TINA-C delivered its completed set of
validated architectural specifications. At this point the consortium decided to
restructure to drive forward the adoption of TINA in the marketplace, forming separate
interest groups to address Intelligent Networks, Mobility, Service Management, Service
Access and Provisioning, Electronic Commerce, Security, Application of TINA, the
Distributed Processing Environment (DPE), IP control and Management, and Compliance and
The 46 TINA-C members include: Alcatel, AT&T, BT, Cable
and Wireless, Cegetel, China Ministry of Information Industry, CSELT, Deutsche Telecom,
Eurescom, Expersoft, France Telecom, Fujitsu, Hewlett-Packard, Hitachi, IBM, Iona, Korea
Telecom, KPN, Lucent Technologies, Marconi Communications, MCIWorldcom, NEC, Nortel
Networks, NTT, OKI, OMG, Sharp, Siemens, Sprint, Starvision, Sun Microsystems, Swisscom,
Tadiran, Telcordia (Bellcore), TeleDanmark, Telenor, Telia, Telkom, Telstra, Toshiba.
For more information about the consortium see
www.tinac.com. For more information on TINA principles see, http://www.tinac.com/about/principles_of_tinac.htm