Microsoft Working on the Successor to HTTP, Emphasizes Mobile

With participants from across the Internet ecosystem working on the successor to the protocol that opened the Internet to the world, Microsoft's proposed a draft approach that extends previous work in terms of its focus on speed and mobility. Dubbed Montenegro, or HTTP Speed+Mobility, Microsoft's proposal "emphasizes performance improvements and security while at the same time accounting for the important needs of mobile devices and applications," according to the draft document.
The IETF approved a new charter to define HTTP 2.0 to address the performance limitations of the original HTTP which directs web traffic today.
Building on Google's work with its SPDY ("Speedy") protocol for faster and more secure website loading and IETF work with WebSockets, Microsoft's approach "includes keeping people and their apps in control of network access. Specifically, the client remains in control over the content that it receives from the web."
"This extends a key attribute of the existing HTTP protocol that has served the Web well. The app or browser is in the best position to assess what the user is currently doing and what data is already locally available. This approach enables apps and browsers to innovate more freely, delivering the most relevant content to the user based on the user's actual needs," according to the draft proposal, an excerpt of which is posted by Jean Paoli on Microsoft's "interoperability@microsoft" blog.
The root of the HTTP's speed limitations is a result of it only allowing "for a unidirectional request/response model," a limitation that Google is addressing with SPDY, and its reliance on "multiple TCP connections for concurrency," Microsoft notes in Montenegro.
Microsoft's proposal would extend Google and IETF's work in this regard by extending it to include a focus on making Web apps faster. "We think that apps-not just browsers-should get faster too. More and more, apps are how people access web services, in addition to their browser."
Making mobile better includes extending battery life, Microsoft continues. "HTTP 2.0 can help decrease the power consumption of network access. Mobile devices also give people a choice of networks with different costs and bandwidth limits. Embedded sensors and clients face similar issues. Mobile considerations require that HTTP be network efficient while simultaneously being sensitive to the limited power, computation, and connectivity capabilities of the client device."

Written by Kevin Kutcher at 13:00
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