GPRS Dual Transfer Mode

December 2, 2007 by arvindpadmanabhan They say necessity is the mother of invention. So when GPRS saw the upcoming competition from UMTS it had to invent new methods to keep itself alive longer in the cellular world. The greater truth is that everyone knew that UMTS will not replace GSM/GPRS overnight. Rather, these two access standards will co-exist for a long time to come before 3G completely replaces 2.5G. More than competition, it was completion and cooperation. It was correctly envisaged that this coexistence will happen for the following reasons: 1. Going by demand, deployment of 3G cells will happen in phases whereby urban areas could be covered by 3G while rural areas continue on 2.5G. This means that movement from urban to rural will trigger an inter-RAT handover. 2. 3G may be deployed at the level of microcells while at the macrocell level 2.5G may be used. 3. Operators have invested considerably in 2.5G and the move to 3G will at best be a transition. 4. Because WCDMA at 2100 MHz generally lacks the indoor coverage that¶s possible with GSM 900 MHz, this leads to another use case for inter-RAT handover. 5. It will take time for users to switch consumption patterns, to move from voice-centric to data-centric. 6. It will take time for users to give up their old handsets in favour of 3G-enabled handsets. Whatever be the case, one of the keys problems for GPRS is that CS and PS traffic cannot happen simultaneously. How then can we meet user expectations when an inter-RAT handover from UMTS to GPRS will necessarily mean dropping the packet connection? GPRS standards provides for three classes of MS:
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Class A: supports simultaneous attach, simultaneous activation, simultaneous monitor, simultaneous invocation and simultaneous traffic. A CS call in the middle of PS call will not disrupt the latter. This class of a mobile may even require two transceivers because CS and PS could be on different frequencies. RF duplexers may be needed along with multiple call processing units. There is no coordination between the two service domains. As such, such a mobile is quite complex and rarely implemented. The cost of such a mobile is also likely to be high and with possibly low battery life. Class B: supports simultaneous attach, simultaneous activation and simultaneous monitor. Service invocation and traffic are mutually exclusive. This means that a CS call in the midst of a PS call will suspend the latter. Class C: the two domains are mutually exclusive even for attach. If MS is used for the CS domain (possibly chosen by the user), PS domain becomes unavailable.

Thus, although the class A mobile will suit inter-RAT handover from UTRAN, it is prohibitively complex. To overcome this problem, designers have standardized the Class A Dual Transfer Mode (DTM) MS which can be seen as a subset of a Class A MS. This work

the slots have to be contiguous (TCH + multiple PDTCH). in the event of a handover. such paging coordination is possible. the domains are not independent as a true Class A MS. Changes in the network are necessary to enable this coordination. PSI 14 has been defined for this purpose which may received in DTM state. Main DCCH Assignment (for single timeslot packet signalling on main DCCH). 9. power control. Finally. 12. If multislots are used. although an RLC/MAC block is sent in four bursts. In particular. 10. The use of main DCCH for PS domain signalling may affect the signalling of an active CS call. main DCCH can be used for packet procedures. even without a Gs interface. Although multislot approach gives higher data rates. However. it will be difficult to find just as many empty slots in the target cell. 7. Thus. An MS supporting a certain multislot class will support all lower classes as well. In this case. This reduced the congestion caused by GPRS signalling that happens on the border of RA/LA. a new protocol discriminator (PD) has been defined ± GPRS Transparent Transport Protocol (GTTP). 11. the BSS maintains a mapping of the IMSI and TLLI. MS will not perform any cell reselection and NC mode does not matter. that a dedicated connection cannot be released while maintaining the TBF. Resources assignments towards DTM state are made using one of three messages: DTM Assignment Command (generally used when CS resources have to be reallocated). As an alternative. A dedicated connection is initiated. Its characteristics are the following: 1.started in November 1999. Both calls could be shared on a single slot. can be commanded by the BSS to make a handover. TBF is released. Certain things can be coordinated between the two domains ± measurements. new allocations using DTM procedures can be used. To simplify signalling procedures. Thus. this happens in three stages. there is an enhanced CS release procedure by which the MS may be sent SI/PSI to ease re-entry into Packet Transfer Mode. Today it is fairly stable and we are beginning to see DTM mobiles in the market [1]. Simultaneous traffic on both domains is possible and network coordinates this. It will be clear from Figure 1. Thus. 8. Packet Assignment Command (when only PS resources have to be added while keeping CS resources the same). Thus. The state transitions are depicted in Figure 1. An MS in DTM. To clarify. 5. This enables the BSS to ³page´ a mobile (using PACCH) in Packet Transfer Mode for an incoming CS call. While it is true that a CS call can be added to an MS in Packet Transfer Mode. These may reallocate resources of the ongoing CS call. 6. the MS can request to perform Cell Update or Routing Area Update during a CS call using the main DCCH. both are half-rate channels (TCH/H + PDTCH/H). The use of timeslots is also restricted. a DTM mobile can have exclusive allocation in the uplink as an extra. 4. This is a new network mode known as NMO-II bis. at half rate it is physically sent over 8 TDMA frames. Packet CS Release . All messages with this PD are passed transparently by the BSS to the SGSN. PS call will be temporarily suspended before it is again established. 3. For the purpose of demultiplexing. timing advance. an MS is dedicated mode can be paged for a packet call using the main DCCH. CS and PS are carried on the same frequency. Likewise. the MS transits to DTM for re-establishing the data connection. 2. Use of main DCCH for PS signalling is on SAPI 0. While a non-DTM MS will support dynamic allocation and fixed allocation.

DTM is a significant feature for a GPRS phone. Mark Pecen and Andrew Howell. . 2. Its has great value within a dualmode phone. Overall. but at least they will not lose their data connection. Figure 1: RR Operating Modes and State Transitions From my search on the Internet. it is not clear how these data rates have been obtained. List of S60 devices supporting GPRS Class A (Dual Transfer Mode). Packet SI Status. we need to ask one question: How often do we download/upload data while on a voice call? References: 1. DTM will not be required as we move to an all-IP core and the inevitable death of CS domain. April 2001. Given that Multislot Class 11 represents 4 Rx. 27 Sept 2007. I discovered that one common class implemented by mobile phone vendors is the DTM Multislot Class 11. IEEE Personal Communications. In the meantime while we have it. Packet PSI S tatus and Packet Serving Cell Data (PSCD) are also used in this regard. Eventually. Users may notice slower data rates following a handover from UTRAN. nor will they get into a habit of terminating their voice calls to get their important data through. Simultaneous Voice and Data Operation for GPRS/EDGE: Class A Dual Transfer Mode. Nokia Forum.6/118. 3 Tx and 5 active slots per frame. The technical specification of Nokia N95 states a speed of DL/UL 177.4 kbps.Indication (on PACCH).

This is also possible in a 2G network. FP1 S60 3rd Ed. Note that in the 3GPP standard the term DTM (Dual Transfer Mode) is used to denote the same capability. FP1 S60 3rd Ed S60 3rd Ed S60 3rd Ed S60 3rd Ed S60 3rd Ed S60 3rd Ed S60 3rd Ed S60 3rd Ed S60 3rd Ed S60 3rd Ed S60 3rd Ed S60 3rd Ed S60 2nd Ed. FP1 S60 3rd Ed. but depends on whether the network is configured to support DTM. . Class A devices can connect to both GPRS/WCDMA packet data and GSM voice services simultaneously. 27 Sept 2007. Nokia Forum. FP3 S60 2nd Ed. Nokia E90 Communicator Nokia N95 Nokia 6121 Classic Nokia 6110 Navigator Nokia 5700 XpressMusic Nokia 6290 Nokia E70 Nokia E65 Nokia E61i Nokia E61 Nokia E60 Nokia N93 Nokia N92 Nokia N91 Nokia N80 Nokia N77 Nokia N73 Nokia N71 Nokia N90 Nokia N70 S60 3rd Ed. FP3 DTM allows simultaneous packet data transmission along with voice call when connected to a 3G network. FP1 S60 3rd Ed. Description The following table lists current S60 devices that support GPRS Class A mode. FP1 S60 3rd Ed.List of S60 devices supporting GPRS Class A (Dual Transfer Mode). FP1 S60 3rd Ed.

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