OASIS to standardize M2M messaging protocol

30 Apr 2013

ITEM: The Organization for the Advancement of Structured Information Standards (OASIS) has officially backed open messaging protocol MQTT to connect the billions of embedded M2M systems that will comprise the “Internet of Things" (IoT).

According to the official announcement, MQTT (Message Queuing Telemetry Transport) is “a publish/subscribe messaging transport protocol optimized to connect physical world devices and events with enterprise servers and other consumers. It is designed to overcome the challenges of connecting the rapidly expanding physical world of sensors, actuators, phones, and tablets with established software processing technologies.”

Put simply, MQTT is an open protocol that allows embedded systems to exchange data and talk to each other. First developed in the late 90s by IBM and Eurotech, MQTT is already used in a wide variety of embedded systems, including medical devices in hospitals (including pacemakers) and oil pipeline monitoring systems.

"MQTT is well suited to underpin the world of M2M/IoT and mobile applications where resources such as bandwidth and battery power are at a premium. It is an extremely lightweight, simple yet reliable protocol, designed for use where small code footprints are often advantageous," said Richard Coppen of IBM, co-chair of the new OASIS MQTT Technical Committee.

OASIS intends to make MQTT the standard messaging protocol for embedded systems, which the fabled “Internet of Things” is going to need to really take off, reports Network World Asia:

"One of the big challenges for right now is that there is not a clear open standard" for message communication with embedded systems, said Mike Riegel, an IBM vice president of mobile and application integration middleware. "We know historically that unless you get to an open standard like this, it is not possible to drive the breakthroughs that are needed."

Riegel says that MQTT could “set the stage for bringing online billions of low-cost, embedded data-collecting telemetry devices” in same way that HTTP enabled information sharing in the form of the World Wide Web.

The new OASIS MQTT Technical Committee – which includes reps Cisco, IBM, Red Hat, Software AG and Tibco – aims to enable MQTT to work with more networks, devices and apps.

"At OASIS, we’ll be addressing IoT data flow challenges and other issues that have been identified by the community," says committee co-chair Raphael Cohn. "We'll broaden the range of enterprise solutions by enabling integration with business applications and expanding connectivity to different types of networks and remote devices."

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