Nortel Leads Group to Develop Broadband Standards

Nortel Networks Corp. is heading up a group of more than 30 Internet infrastructure and content and service providers in an effort to set common standards for broadband delivery over the Internet. The group, called the Broadband Content Delivery Forum (BCDF), aims to drive broadband by making sure vendors develop common equipment and services instead of fighting over competing technology.

Nortel has lined up some big-time support for its effort. BCDF boasts as members networking heavyweights like HP, Sun and BT (British Telecommunications), as well as broadcasters like BBC (British Broadcasting Corporation) and NBC's Internet Unit.

Nortel set out some specific goals for the group, one of which is to accelerate delivery of data over the Internet. The group will also work to improve the quality of the transmission of high-speed video and data services. By doing this, BCDF plans to encourage use of these services and drive development of new products.

The group also plans to develop technology that allows networks to identify Web customers. Service providers could use this kind of technology to create personalized content and servers for their customers.

The first meeting of BCDF is scheduled for this May. Other members include Akamai Technologies, Aliant, Alta Vista, AT&T Broadband, Bertelsmann, Be Here, Broadband Digital Group, Broadjump, Canbras Communications, CMGI, DSL Networks, El Mundo, Enron, First Mark Comm, iKnowledge, InfoLibria,, Inktomi, NetActive, Qwest Communications International, Redo Ajato, Starguide Digital Network, Telocity, Telstra, TVA Sistema de Televisao, Universo Online, and Zyan Communications.