John Meredith’s career started in 1975 as an engineer designing analogue radio and digital signalling and control equipment, and software for radio terminals and major civil command and control and switching installations. In the late 1980s, John concentrated on telecommunications standards and regulations (UK telecoms deregulation, UK industry coordinator for RACE, and UK liaison via the then DTI with CoCom), eventually moving in 1991 to the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) based in France. Here, he held responsibility for committees covering a wide range of technologies. In 1999 he became Specifications Manager for the newly formed Third Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) established as a loose association of the telecoms standards development organizations of the US, Japan, China, South Korea, India, and “Greater” Europe (with member companies in the Middle East, North and South America, Taiwan, Russia, Indonesia, South Africa, the Pacific rim, …). 3GPP is responsible for the technical standards of the 3rd, 4th and 5th generation of mobile technologies (and also for the maintenance of the 2nd generation standard, GSM, originally developed by ETSI). Several thousand engineers representing around 700 equipment suppliers, network operators, national administrations and research establishments from around the world cooperate to write the technical specifications for 3GPP systems. John was appointed Director of ETSI’s Mobile Competence Centre (MCC), responsible for the day to day management of the 20-strong department. MCC provides 3GPP’s global secretariat. John played a large part in the evolution of 3GPP’s working procedures and in 3GPP’s web site and interactive portal.
With each new generation of mobile technology, there has been an increasing importance placed on Standards-Essential Patents, and John has been called upon to provide depositions under oath or written affidavits in a number of cases of alleged patent infringement and anti-trust, identifying prior art in the form of written contributions to the 3GPP standardization process.
In April 2021, John retired from ETSI and joined the IPEG network of consultants.