“During TP#55, we progressed two Releases, explored IoT industry initiatives and discussed oneM2M’s interoperability test event plans”

Roland Hechwartner summarizes the latest developments from oneM2M’s recent Technical Plenary #55 in this interview. In addition to representing Deutsche Telekom (DT), Roland is the Chair for oneM2M’s Technical Plenary (TP) and responsible for the coordination of the overall management of the technical work within the TP and its Working Groups.



Q: Let us begin with a summary of this TP?

RH: As you might recall, the main order of business at TPs is standardization. The objectives for this TP were to progress release 4 in order to get all release 4 specifications ready for their ratification, as well as to progress release 5.

Our members also monitor developments in the IoT ecosystem, so we devoted some time to discussing Matter which is an industry initiative for connectivity in the home. A couple of oneM2M members are involved in the alliance that is supporting Matter so we had an opportunity to learn about the direction this initiative is taking.

Q: Getting back to the TP, what were its main accomplishments?

RH: Yes, let me cover those in three parts for each of our Working Groups (WGs).

The Requirements & Domain Models (RDM) continues to focus on release 5. They made progress on a Technical Report, TR-0068, which deals with AI enablement to oneM2M. They also agreed on a set of new requirements to the Technical Specifications (TS) TS-0002 Requirements document.

oneM2M’s Smart Device Template (SDT) provides a common data structure for exchanging information at the IoT device level. That is a crucial step for achieving interoperability in multi-vendor IoT systems. During this TP, RDM members made progress on the Technical Specification document, TS-0023. This focuses on the use of SDT for information model and mapping for vertical industries. Participants agreed new change requests, resolved open issues, and created the new, corrected baseline for release 4 as well as release 5.

Finally, RDM made joint progress with the two other WGs on the release 5 work item WI-0109 which deals with interworking proxy entity-based (IPE) device management with oneM2M FlexContainers. This activity is at the 80% completion level.

In the System Design and Security (SDS) WG the stage 3 work was completed for all release 4 features and release 4 XSDs have been generated. “XSD” stands for XML Schema Definition and, as recommended by W3C, describes the structure of an xml document.

The SDS WG still needs to complete a final review of TS-0004 “Service Layer Core Protocol Specification” against TS-0001 “Functional Architecture” specification is required to check that there are no further missing pieces. The intention of these tasks is to avoid inherited errors, inconsistencies, and ambiguous procedures in release 5.

The Testing & Developers Ecosystem (TDE) WG shared details about the upcoming 8th InterOp Event to be held in December 2022. This is in the week following TP57 which TTA and KETI will host in South Korea. The testing scope comprises Release 2, 3 and 4 on TS-0001 Architecture and TS-0004 Protocols & Bindings baselines from TP#56. It also includes TS-0013: Interoperability testing over HTTP/CoAP/MQTT/WebSocket.

In parallel to the interoperability testing sessions, there will be additional activities focused on conformance testing. The purpose and benefits of interoperability testing are to validate the oneM2M standard to eliminate ambiguities and potential issues and to test interoperability between implementations from different companies. The conformance tests, which will be operated in parallel, run on participants’ implementations to validate test purposes and debug participants’ implementations.

In anticipation of the December events in S. Korea, we heard about Sejong University’s project to develop a “tinyIoT” open source oneM2M platform. This is a tiny oneM2M server for embedded systems with potential uses in Edge/Fog environments. Assuming they make satisfactory progress, we expect to hear more about their participation in the InterOp event.

Q: You mentioned a session to learn about the Matter connectivity protocol. What were some of the points that came up?

RH: One of our members, Marianne Mohali of Orange kindly briefed the TP with an overview of the publicly available information of the Matter initiative in which Orange is a participating member. We have seen many IoT standardization initiatives over the years. For some, such as OCF (Open Connectivity Foundation), we have jointly defined an interworking framework. So, it is useful to understand where this one fits in the landscape.

Matter is an IP-based connectivity protocol with roots in the home automation or smart home market. It builds on earlier work within the ZigBee Alliance. There was a good discussion about the motivation for Matter which sends a positive signal that organizations see an opportunity to revisit the smart homes sector. Also, it is good to see the emphasis on standards-based solutions to expand the devices market.

We are always keen to explore the relationship between oneM2M and other industry developments. From this early discussion, there seem to be common grounds in the Device Management and Information Model areas. Let me remind you that Device Management is one of oneM2M’s common service functions (CSFs) and we already spoke earlier about information models in the context of the smart device template. I think the group ended the meeting seeing synergies between Matter and oneM2M and hoping to learn more as details about Matter are published.

Standing back from this discussion, I believe it is important to emphasise oneM2M’s role a service enabler via a horizontal framework that re-uses and interworks with a range of specific connectivity protocols and standards. It is also worth repeating that oneM2M achieves this by exposing easy-to-use APIs to highly specified applications.

Q: To close, what plans are there for the next TP?

RH: The next TP, TP56, will be held as hybrid meeting, hosted by ETSI at their premises in Sophia Antipolis. The dates are from September 26 to 30, 2022. During this session there will be elections for several chair and vice chair positions. We will also have an in-person gathering to celebrate oneM2M’s tenth anniversary.

I would also like to add that there is another important event on the horizon. That is ETSI’s industry wide IoT Week. After a couple of postponements due to the pandemic, the event is finally returning in person. We expect to see a lot of coverage about oneM2M in the context of other IoT industry developments. There is no charge to attend the event, which takes place from 10 to 14 October so readers have plenty of time to register for attendance.