a) What is the GSMA Open Gateway initiative?
GSMA Open Gateway is a framework of Application Programmable Interfaces (APIs) designed to provide universal access to operator networks for developers and hyperscalers
The GSMA Open Gateway global initiative aims to build on GSMA’s expertise to support its members in the exposure and monetisation of telecommunication network capabilities through Open APIs and universal federation, being the common ‘glue’ between Cloud infrastructure-based services and Earth connect physical telecommunications networks.
This initiative will enable developers to break into new markets, offering new services and functionality to customers. It will also facilitate faster and more efficient negotiations between Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) and third parties by removing the risk of contradictory terms and conditions from different MNOs.
b) Why is GSMA Open Gateway needed?
GSMA Open Gateway will apply the interconnection concept into an API economy world, to create a layer of technology easily accessible to the developer community in which all the different features of the network in every single operator, in every single country, have already been integrated once.
GSMA Open Gateway APIs are defined, developed and published in CAMARA, the open source project for developers to access enhanced network capabilities, driven by the Linux Foundation in collaboration with the GSMA.
With CAMARA Open APIs you can plug in to network capabilities once, and it’s already working. Now imagine those APIs being put into the stacks of the cloud providers. And whenever somebody’s developing code for a new business model, they can drop lines of code not just from the cloud provider’s side but also from that global telecommunication standard stacks. This could include identity, cybersecurity, billing, signalling, geolocation. That’s the kind of vision, and real foundation of the GSMA.
c) When was the initiative launched?
Operators have been working on this initiative since February 2022.
The first demonstrations of the Open Gateway initiative were launched at MWC23 Barcelona, with the first live Open Gateway APIs to be deployed in Q3 2023.
d) Who benefits from this initiative and how?
The whole mobile ecosystem benefits. The new 5G Network capabilities will be exposed through data service APIs which are more readily available across global telecom networks and countries, making it seamless and easy to access within a controlled and federated market.
GSMA Open Gateway will help cloud providers and developers to enhance existing services and deploy new services to their customers more quickly across operator networks by giving developers a single point of access to the world’s largest connectivity platform. This is achieved via common, northbound service APIs – supported by the CAMARA Project – that simply expose mobile operators’ network capabilities within a consistent, interoperable and federated framework. The benefits of the initiative include:
- Seamless customer experience
- Accelerated technology development, innovation, and commercial adoption (minimising implementation effort)
- Accelerated education and promotion
- Support of application portability
Those who will benefit from the initiative include:
- Application developers / content and gaming developers / software developers (i.e., the mobile industry’s direct and indirect customers)
- Enterprise customers
- The telecom industry – other operators and suppliers
- End customers / consumers.
e) Who will be the most likely users of these APIs?
The primary user is the application developers / content and gaming developers / software developers (i.e, the mobile industry’s direct and indirect B2B customers).
Secondary users will be MNO enterprise customers who will have exposure to more value-add services which can be sold to their end consumer, therefore improving end user service experiences.
f) What APIs are supported by GSMA Open Gateway today?
The GSMA Open Gateway initiative launched with eight network APIs, including SIM Swap, Quality on Demand, Device Status, Number Verification, Simple Edge Discovery, One Time Password SMS, Carrier Billing – Check Out and Device Location. The initiative plans to launch further APIs throughout 2023.
They can be found in the CAMARA repository here https://github.com/camaraproject
g) What are the related use cases for these APIs?
The initial APIs have the potential to facilitate numerous game-changing opportunities including the delivery of more convincing and immersive gaming experiences, combatting online financial crime while bolstering global cybersecurity, and enabling uncrewed aerial vehicles to carry out data intensive missions and fulfil safety obligations.
h) Who is currently making these APIs available?
The GSMA Open Gateway Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) has been signed by some of the world’s largest and most innovative mobile operators. The MoU signatories are collaboratively working towards GSMA Open Gateway API deployment by H2 2023, by federating access to their networks via common APIs for a number of key services.
i) Which other APIs will follow and when?
More universal APIs will follow during 2023/24, creating an inclusive environment for scale based on open technical and business framework templates, leveraging the GSMA’s experience in interconnection and global roaming.
j) How can I access GSMA Open Gateway services?
Northbound APIs for developer communities can be found in the CAMARA repository here https://github.com/camaraproject
Access is through deployed Operator API Gateway platforms. In addition, cloud providers may make the GSMA Open Gateway APIs available through their platforms. This cannot be achieved however without cross-industry cooperation between MNOs.