“In addition to progress on oneM2M’s R4/R5 standardization, it is pleasing to see hackathon and developer initiatives that help market development”


In this interview, Roland Hechwartner of Deutsche Telekom (DT) and Chair for oneM2M’s Technical Plenary (TP) describes the latest developments and lessons learned from oneM2M’s recent TP52. This was organized as a hybrid event, the first to involve some level of physical attendance for almost two years. Thanks to the infrastructure in place at ETSI’s premises, each delegate had her/his own microphone. TP and all working group meetings went well over the scheduled period running from November 29th to December 3rd.

Q: What were the major developments to come out of this TP?

RH: You may recall that our members are working to finalize Release 4 of the standard and, in parallel, tabling items for consideration in Release 5. Let me begin with an update on Release 4 activities. Overall, there was particularly good progress in resolving most of the open issues. However, ratification of Release 4 requires all related deliverables to be agreed and ready for publication by the oneM2M Partners. This will not be achieved before Q2 2022. This is due to a combination of procedural and substantive issues.

In the Requirements and Domain Modeling (RDM) working group (WG) TR-0058, the new Technical Report on Railway Domain for Release 4 was finalized and put on email approval by the Technical Plenary (WI-0092). This TR comprises a use case selection which will be developed further with use case assessment and potential requirements as part of the Release 5.

There was also progress on the Technical Report dealing with AI enablement in oneM2M. Participants at TP#52 proposed, discussed, and agreed several new use cases and potential requirements.

The majority of the System Design and Security (SDS) meeting time was spent on open issues in the Release 4 protocol specifications. Consequently, this stage 3 work was completed for nearly all Release-4 features. Discussions in some of the other areas were not yet concluded and there are still a few corrections to be made before Release 4 is completed at the protocol level. This includes a final review of two Technical Specification (TS) documents, TS-0004 Service Layer Core Protocol against TS-0001 Functional Architecture, to check that there are no further missing pieces.

The Testing and Developers Ecosystem (TDE) developed Test Purposes for the Release 4 version of the Smart Device Template (SDT) TS-0023. This covers functionality related to Software Management, Process Management, Access Control Policy and Subscription/Notification features. The TDE WG also worked on development of a Work Item for new Developer Guides, which was approved at the closing session of TP52.

Q: And how would you summarize developments for Release 5?

RH: Release 5 will comprise functionalities like advanced semantic discovery, system enhancements to support data protection regulations, interworking with sensor thing API, and effective IoT communication to protect 3GPP networks, to enable smart city and many other use cases. Input is still invited and the freeze milestone for stage 1 was set to Q1 2022, but at the TP53 it will be assessed whether to postpone the milestone by one more meeting.

In addition to the progress for Release 4, the SDS WG also progressed Release 5 for the following Technical Reports: TR-0033 Study on Enhanced Semantic Enablement (agreed), TR-0062 oneM2M System Enhancement to Support Privacy Data Protection Regulations, TR-0063 Effective IoT Communication to Protect 3GPP Networks, and TR-0066 System Enhancement to Support Data License Management. Furthermore, five contributions for Release 5 Technical Specifications were agreed.

Device Management is an important topic to establish the foundations for any IoT system. Following on some initial work carried out by Orange, members discussed and approved a new WI to improve this capability within the oneM2M standard. The new WI focuses on Device Management (DM) based on configurations that use an interworking proxy entity (IPE) which can be enhanced with the use of oneM2M FlexContainers. This approval was the result of discussions dating back to the end of 2019 and which were progressed during this meeting both in the RDM and in the SDS working group as well as in the TP. The new, DM proposal is the first to employ a native-oneM2M approach. Several companies raised detailed questions and requested clarifications on the implications for oneM2M as well as the way forward for oneM2M’s DM common service function. Thus, several rounds of in-depth technical discussions which described the solution, and experiences from implementations of this new approach, were required to eventually achieve agreement. The members supporting the new WI include Orange, Deutsche Telekom, Nokia, Hansung University, and Exacta GSS.

Q: What other work items came up at TP#52?

RH: While technical standardization is the focus for oneM2M, we should not overlook other activities that contribute to standardization frameworks. This includes interoperability and testing activities, for example, as well as initiatives to help organizations adopt and implement solutions based on the oneM2M standard.

During TP#52, members approved a new work item for Conformance Test Maintenance, building on support from Exacta GSS, Deutsche Telekom, C-DOT, and Hansung University. Conformance testing is needed to test if an implementation complies with the oneM2M specifications. The proposed WI is to maintain the specifications for conformance test from different releases.

We also discussed and approved a new work item in the oneM2M Developer Guides series. The aim of this initiative is to produce a series of Technical Reports that guide developers who want to use functionalities offered by a oneM2M service platform. Technical Reports that are planned to be developed as part of this new work item are as follows:

  • Developer Guide: Deploying Semantics
  • Developer guide: 3GPP interworking example
  • Developer guide: Time Series
  • Developer guide: Location tracker examples
  • Developer guide: Advanced Subscription and Notification

Exacta GSS, Deutsche Telekom, Orange, KETI and Hansung University are the members that supported this work item proposal.

Q: oneM2M featured in an international hackathon event in November. What information about the event was shared at TP#52?

RH: At the closing session of the TP, there was a summary presentation of the recently held International oneM2M Hackathon. The Hackathon event was organized by KETI (Korea Electronic Technology Institute) with support from oneM2M Partner SDOs, TTA and ETSI, as well as the Korean Ministry of Science and ICT and the European funded IndiCo project. The event was sponsored by KETI as part of its 30th Anniversary celebrations.

Twenty-six teams from 6 countries participated in the Hackathon. Their goal was to build an IoT solution that can help citizens solve major environmental or societal issues. The solution had to use any one of several oneM2M platforms. To help participants build their solution, each team received a budget to purchase any hardware with sensors, actuators, and microcontrollers.

The quality of the projects that were presented was extremely high. We saw a wide variety of use cases, ranging from ‘Talking Potatoes’ to facilitate personal, educational experiences that help students and teachers in remote classroom settings, to a cellular-based system for remote irrigation. The range of ideas and variety of use cases demonstrates that oneM2M is a powerful and flexible standard for implementing and deploying IoT systems across many different sectors. In addition to their technical work, each team produced a hackster.io project describing step by step how to build the IoT solution as well as a short video showing the solution in action.

The first prize was awarded to the team CSSRJ of the Sejong University (Korea) for their project oneM2M Autonomous cooperative smart delivery system. A delivery system based on oneM2M which comprises drones and turtle robots.

There were two second prizes. One was awarded to the team QLU_1 of the Qilu University (China) for their smart automatic pet feeder based on oneM2M. The other went to the team PENN_1 of Penn State College of Engineering (USA) for their Cellular IoT Irrigation System for oneM2M based on the Nordic Thingy:91. This project uses oneM2M and Zephyr RTOS to create a smart irrigation system using cellular based IoT with the Nordic Thingy:91.

KETI have kindly posted a recording of the awards ceremony.

Q: What are your closing thoughts on the TP#52 event?

RH: I began by introducing TP#52 as the first hybrid TP for oneM2M’s members. The immediate feedback received from delegates present at the ETSI premises as well as from those participating remotely was positive. As you can see from event photos and on-line reactions, it is clear that in-person attendees appreciated the chance to see and discuss with old colleagues from across the world. However, additional feedback will be gathered and might lead to future adjustments to the meeting schedule, for instance, to avoid overlapping sessions and to adjust the timing of the sessions. 

As we look ahead to the planning for TP#53 in February, I’d like to thank all oneM2M delegates, the chairs and vice chairs as well as the oneM2M partners and their excellent secretaries for their great support, especially throughout this challenging year. Without all those committed people and their efforts oneM2M would not have made such progress in 2021!