Flexible Service Architectures

by Martin Gitsels, Jochen Sauter

Siemens AG, Corporate Research, Software & Systems Architectures



The Aavailability of lowshort-range RF wireless technologies and personal handheld or palm size devices, that are capable of an always-on networking operation mode, havehas sparked many activities in the field of mobile applications, mobile architectures and platforms, and mobile infrastructures over the last few years. In the ultimate scenario, so-called nomadic users are provided with an ubiquitous services that always adapts appropriately to personal preferences of the user, capabilities of the communication device, network QoS parameters, and location/time constraints.

In a scenario from the mobile business area, a person arrives at a foreign airport by plane. Relying on the local wireless communication infrastructure, he uses his carried on mobile device to learn about electronic services that are available locally. Typical services might be hotel booking, information about local shops, or download of music, all of them accessible with respect to context awareness constraints.

From a technical properspective, handhelds are typically non-PC mobile devices for the mass market with limited resources in terms of memory and processing power. Due to the rapid evolution of networked services and applications, mobile device development cannot take the pace of incorporating new services and applications right from fabrication anymore.

To overcome this problem, flexible software architectures are required for embedded mobile devices that allow for the flexible download of services onto the software platform of the device. In addition, and update of the platform components must be carried out possible during operation of the device. Mechanisms such as the dynamic loading of features might allow for new business models for applications. Consider the basic application as for free but additional features must be paid per use.

In this presentation, we discuss issues about flexible service architectures for embedded devices and propose solutions for selected problems such as software download.