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Discussion of Synchronisation Standards. SWG2 Technical Report T2-(99)669 V0.1 Helsinki, FI TSG-T WG2 #5 06-09 Sep ‘99. Discussion of Sync Standards. 3G Information Device Users Require Access to the Same Information Regardless of Location Regardless of Device Types Personal Computers

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Discussion of synchronisation standards

Discussion of Synchronisation Standards

SWG2 Technical Report



Helsinki, FI TSG-T WG2 #5

06-09 Sep ‘99

T2-99669 v0.1

Discussion of sync standards
Discussion of Sync Standards

  • 3G Information Device Users Require Access to the Same Information

    • Regardless of Location

    • Regardless of Device Types

      • Personal Computers

      • Servers

      • Handheld or Palm-size Devices or

      • Mobile Phones.

    • This Means The Information Needs to be Synchronised

  • T2-(99)669 Provides Information on Existing Synchronisation Protocols By

    • Summarizing Proprietary and Open Standard Protocols Relevant to Current and Future Mobile Communication Devices and

    • Covering Only Synchronisation Between End-user Devices, Desktop Applications, and Server-based Information Services but

    • Not Covering Replication or Synchronisation Between Enterprise Databases.

T2-99669 v0.1

Existing standards
Existing Standards


  • Extension to IrDA For Data Exchange Between

    • Mobile Devices and

    • Mobile Devices and Desktops or PDAs

  • Defines Four Levels of Support for Information Exchange

    • Each Higher Level Must Support All of the Preceding Levels

      • Level 1 (Minimum Level)

      • Level 2 (Access Level)

      • Level 3 (Index Level), and

      • Level 4 (Sync Level).

    • Level 4 Does Not Require Level 3

    • Levels 2 and 4 Are the Most Relevant for Sync

  • Has Been Adopted by IrDA and Bluetooth

  • Has Wide Industry Support.

T2-99669 v0.1

Existing standards1
Existing Standards


  • Adopted the IrMC Standard for Sync


  • Has Not Specified a Sync Standard

  • Attempts to Form a Work Group Last Year Were Abandoned.

    MNCRS (Mobile Network Computer Reference Specification)

  • Specified an API Providing Data-sync Services Focused on Java-enabled Devices

  • Promoted by a Number of Companies

  • Has Not Been Adopted by Any Formal Standards Body.

    Symbian’s ‘Synchronisation’

  • Composed of Puma, Ericsson, Nokia, Motorola, Starfish, and Lotus

  • Disbanded Before Any Agreement Was Reached.

T2-99669 v0.1

Existing standards2
Existing Standards

MDSP (Mobile Data Synchronisation Protocol)

  • Promoted by IBM

  • Designed for Use Between

    • Mobile Devices Sporadically Connected to the Network and

    • Servers Continuously Connected to the Network

  • Designed to Handle the Case Where Server and Device

    • Store Data in Different Formats and

    • Use Different Software Systems

  • Can Be Used to Push Data Elements to One-Way Devices

  • Has Not Been Adopted by Any Formal Standards Body.

T2-99669 v0.1

Narrowing the playing field
Narrowing the Playing Field

  • One Adopted Mobile Standard that Addresses Sync: IrMC

    • Used in IrDA and BlueTooth

    • Defined by Handset Manufacturers to Provide a Means for Exchanging Data Between Mobile Devices, Desktops, Handhelds, Printers ...

    • Supports Data Exchange With Phone Book, Calendar, Messaging and Note Applications

    • Works With Either Low or High Bandwidth Networks

    • May Be Used in Connection-oriented or Connectionless Links

    • Includes Stuff Like Call Control, Isochronous Audio Transmission, and Permissions for Getting and Setting the Real Time Clock.

    • Doesn’t Specifically Support an Optimized Mode for WAN Sync

      WAN Sync Presents a Unique Set of Problems for Efficient and Accurate Synchronisation.

T2-99669 v0.1

Irmc wan sync issues
IrMC WAN Sync Issues

  • Written to Exchange PIM Data in a PAN or Peer-to-Peer Environment

  • Hasn’t Addressed Sync in a WAN Environment

    • Level 4 Dependent on Connection-Based Transport Protocol

      • Requires a Connection-Oriented Service (in IrDA - IrLAP and IrLMP)

      • A Persistent Connection Between Devices Is Difficult to Maintain in Some WANs

        (Latency Can Slow the Transactions to an Unacceptable Level or Cause Sync to Be Stopped)

    • Inefficient Data Exchange

      • Data Exchanges Between an IrMC Client and Server Tend to Be Chatty and Inefficient.

      • Each Object Sent Between Devices Requires a Separate Request/response Pair

        • GET Operations Entail a Request and Response for Each Object.

        • PUT Operations Can Be More Efficient in a Connectionless Environment, Since No Response Is Expected.

T2-99669 v0.1


Address the Limitations of IrMC Level 4 Sync in a WAN by ..

  • Modifying IrMC Level 4 to Address the WAN Limitations or

  • Extending IrMC Level 4 to Include WAN Sync

    • Operate on Top of Existing Stacks

    • Use As Much Existing Code Base As Possible

T2-99669 v0.1

Irmc technical overview
IrMC Technical Overview

  • The IrMC Specification and Its Supporting OBEX Object Exchange Layer

    • In an IrDA Application, Requires IrLAP, IrLMP, TTP, and IAS

    • In a Bluetooth Application, Requires the Bluetooth Equivalent of These Layers

    • Designed to Swap Transport and Below Layers While Keeping a Common Set of Applications.

  • The Information Exchange Levels of Irmc Starts With Text-based Data Formats

    • Using Industry-standard Data Formats - vCard, vCalendar, plus IETF Versions (in Proc)

    • Adding Telecom-Specific Extensions to vCard

    • Defining New Formats Where None Existed - vMessage, vNote

    • Defining Space-Saving Binary Formats - bvCard, GBO (In Proc)

    • Adding Sync-Specific Exchange Data Objects

      • Change Logs, Change Counters, Time Stamps

      • Information Logs on Database Characteristics

      • Device Information Block for Device Capabilities

      • Database and Unique Object Identifiers

      • Optional Error Logs for Record-level Error Codes

      • Detect Activity During Sync

      • Detect Device Reset

  • T2-99669 v0.1

    Irmc technical overview1
    IrMC Technical Overview

    IrDA Data Hardware/Protocol Stacks Graphical Representation

    T2-99669 v0.1