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The TCP/IP protocol suite has undoubtedly enabled the evolution of connected computing and many other developments since its invention during the 1970s. The Internet acts as a communications tool, an information storage and distribution tool, a marketing channel, and a sales and distribution platform, for consumers and for businesses large and small.

However, TCP/IP was designed for an age in which communication was between computers and terminals in fixed locations, and in which the user interface was text rather than dynamic media such as audio and video. Mobile operators have identified a number of problems with its use in core and access networks, and it is unsuitable for some of the new services that are proposed for 5G. ISG NGP is investigating protocols that would better support the huge performance and capacity improvements planned for 5G radio.

In its first term, ISG NGP laid the foundations, identifying requirements, scenarios, and example next generation technologies. Its task for 2018-19 is to widen industry awareness, standardize relevant specifications, validate the new protocols against near-future use cases, and compare against legacy protocols via a set of defined Key Performance Indicators.

The target is for next-generation protocols to be supported in core and radio access networks in 3GPP Release 17.

Participation in the Next Generation Protocols Industry Specification Group is open to all ETSI members as well as organizations that are not members, subject to signing ISG Agreements. For information on how to participate please contact

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