Outsmarting Smartphones

The issue of bandwidth hogging smartphone users has had a lot of press.  The issue of chatty interactive apps causing congestion through increased signaling traffic, however, is just now starting to get some attention.  In an article I wrote for Wireless Week, I tried to clarify the point that the “bandwidth threat posed by video or Internet downloads is matched by the constant, ever present trickle of millions of handsets pinging the network for updates.”

Here’s an excerpt from that article:

Many mobile applications are designed to automatically check for new content on the network.  To update, the device moves through various states-from being idle to having a dedicated network channel for voice or data communications. Each time the devices changes its state, it creates signaling to the local radio network controller (RNC) to communicate the status change.  Going from idle to dedicated channel, for instance, requires 30 signaling messages.  The RNC is provisioned to handle a certain number of connections based on a statistical analysis of the average number of users in an area and the number of times they use their phones for calls, messaging or Internet access.

Many applications, though, skew this average by polling the network on a regular basis, without the user intention.  Using synchronization technology, an application can check for new messages every minute, consuming the RNC resource and creating data traffic without the user knowing, and additionally, drawing down the battery.  In fact, turning off automatic, frequent updates is what many smartphone users do to extend their battery life.

This problem is solved by mobile synchronization technology that is optimized for wireless networks.  In tests using real traffic we’ve seen dramatic decreases in data transfer (up to 80%), and in battery power consumption (50%).  For the full story, check out the article on WirelessWeek.com.

About mluna7

Michael Luna joined SEVEN in 2010 as Chief Technology Officer and is responsible for the company’s long-term technology and innovation strategy. Luna is a pioneer in the wireless data industry with more than 30 years of management and engineering design experience. Prior to joining SEVEN, Luna served as CTO for AliphCom (Jawbone) where he led early technology evolution, intellectual property and legal services. Prior to AliphCom, he served as CTO for Openwave where he drove the innovation of its industry-leading software solutions and services. Luna also served as Openwave's Vice President of Consulting Engineering, where he and his team generated an average of $50 million per year as a result of active engagements with customers worldwide. Prior to his time at Openwave, Luna served as CTO for 724 Solutions, where he was responsible for technical strategy and standards. He also managed the development of five product lines for the network and data services company. Luna has been awarded 12 patents in the mobile telecommunications field and has co-authored industry papers, standards and held industry leadership positions in OMA, WAP Forum, CDG, TIA and PCMIA. He also developed the first WAP 2 deployment in Japan. Luna serves on the advisory board of AliphCom and Cequient, Inc.
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