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European Telecoms Standards Institute emits mobile edge APIs

Mobile base stations have compute. These APIs will let you tap it

By Richard Chirgwin

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The European Telecommunications Standards Institute has unveiled the first APIs created under its Multi-Access Edge Computing project.

The name of the multi-access edge (MEC) game is to open up computing in mobile base stations to third-party developers. The API releases cover mobile edge services, application lifecycle management, applications running on edge platforms, a location service (LS) API, and a radio network information service (RNIS) API.

The last two are pitched as value-add APIs, designed to help third party applications get information about the state of the radio network and user location.

The full specs are:

  • GS MEC 009 (PDF) – the overarching framework for providing RESTful mobile service APIs;
  • GS MEC 010-2 (PDF) – covering application lifecycle;
  • GS MEC 011 (PDF) – the framework for enabling applications at the mobile edge;
  • GS MEC 012 (PDF) – the RESTful API to the radio network; and
  • GS MEC 013 (PDF) – the location API.

The MEC initiative is an effort to turn mobile base stations into compute nodes in their own right. It has its roots in 2015, when ETSI set up a proof-of-concept and foundation specs. In March, the group expanded the MEC brief to take in things like WiFi that aren't part of cellphone networks.

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