SUEMATSU-Yasuharu Award

Standardization of Interfaces of 4th and 5th Generation Mobile Communications Systems

Contribution to industry

Motohiro ABE
Motohiro ABE

Mr. Motohiro Abe has made major contributions to the establishment of standard specifications for the interfaces of mobile communications systems through his engagement in standard specification development of 4th generation (LTE: Long-Term Evolution and LTE-Advanced) and 5th generation (5G, NR: New Radio) radio interfaces at 3GPP (3rd Generation Partnership Project), a standards development body for global mobile communications systems of the 3rd and subsequent generations.

Mr. Abe has proposed numerous technical solutions that were key to establishing the 3GPP standard specifications and acquired several standard essential patents as an inventor. In the 3GPP Working Groups, he has served as a coordinator (editor and rapporteur) on behalf of delegates of telecommunications carriers and manufacturers from around the world, and has demonstrated leadership in completing specifications. In the S8 HR (S8 Home Routed) architecture for VoLTE (Voice over LTE) roaming service, he led the 3 GPP discussion as a rapporteur and contributed significantly to the establishment of the specification in Release 13, gaining the support of more than 15 companies. In recognition of his achievements, he received Japan’s 46th ITU-AJ Encouragement Award. Based on this technology, NTT DOCOMO launched the VoLTE international roaming service with the KT Corporation of South Korea. This bidirectional international VoLTE roaming service is a world first. Its architecture has been adopted as a de facto standard for the international roaming service by many telecommunications operators worldwide starting with Japan, Korea and North America and followed by Central and South America, Asia and Europe. At present, it is expanding steadily as the only architecture employed in the international roaming service. It also helped promote the global shift from 3G to 4G by lowering the barriers to adopting VoLTE by operators. As a result, services that were previously unavailable overseas, such as the ability to use the VoLTE high-quality voice calls in the international roaming service, have become available, leading to improved convenience.

Mr. Abe has thus made significant contributions to the industry by leading a series of standardization activities essential for the development and practical application of 4G and 5G mobile communications systems. He is expected to continue to play a vital role in the ongoing development of mobile communications.