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Apple found to be using advanced Multipath TCP networking in iOS 7

post #1 of 30
Thread Starter 
After iOS 7 launched on Wednesday, it was discovered that Apple included a new networking protocol called Multipath TCP in the next-gen operating system, allowing devices like the iPhone to simultaneously use multiple interfaces such as cellular and Wi-Fi to transfer data.

Multipath TCP
Source: Olivier Bonaventure


As its name implies, Multipath TCP allows for a connected device, such as an iPhone or iPad, to transmit data over multiple pathways simultaneously. For example, the technology allows for compatible devices to transfer data over both 3G cellular and Wi-Fi networks. The discovery was made by Olivier Bonaventure, a computer science professor at the IP Networking Lab in Belgium, who subsequently posted the findings to his personal blog.

One of Multipath TCP's benefits over traditional TCP extensions is the protocol's ability to push data through the most efficient network, which leads to fewer dropouts. If one channel fails, another will take over.

Bonaventure explains that he made the discovery using an iPad running iOS 7. By monitoring packet traces, he was able to deduce that Multipath TCP was being used to connect to certain compatible Apple servers.

"You won?t see Multipath TCP for regular TCP connections from applications like Safari," Bonaventure writes, "but if you use SIRI, you might see that the connection with one of the apple servers runs uses Multipath TCP."

The technology comes from development rooted in a 2008 initiative funded by the European Commission called the Trilogy Project, though it has yet to see widespread adoption. It is thought that Apple's inclusion of Multipath TCP in iOS 7 is the first consumer product to ship with the technology.

Bonaventure had no guesses as to how Apple plans to implement the advanced protocol beyond its own servers, though it can be speculated that the company is looking for ways to make its iCloud-based services more reliable.
post #2 of 30
Great.
Lotsa stuff under the hood. No company implements new tech better than Apple.
Watched Americas cup this am on an iPad 2 - no lags, nothing different than before the upgrade other than everything appears faster

Have to say I'm getting more comfortable with the iOS7 now. Still think it needs some tweaks here and there - white keyboard on light grey is fine at night but needs more a darker shade in daylight.
Overall pretty good.
post #3 of 30
Typical of Apple. I bet they will also extend to other TCP enhancements, if I may call it that, like tcpcrypt.

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Acronym Definition
APSTNDP All People Seem To Need Data Processing (mnemonic for the 7 OSI reference model layers)
APSTNDP Please Do Not Throw Sausage Pizza Away (backwards mnemonic for the 7 OSI reference model layers)
APSTNDP Application, Presentation, Session, Transport, Network, Data Link, Physical (OSI Reference Model layers)
APSTNDP Aliens Probably Stole the Ninja Dew Pop (mnemonic for the 7 OSI reference model layers)
APSTNDP All Pirate Ships Take No Darn Prisoners (mnemonic for the 7 OSI reference model layers)
APSTNDP A Purple Snake Takes No Dead Prisoners (mnemonic for the 7 OSI reference model layers)
APSTNDP A Powered-Down System Transmits No Data Packets (Open Systems Interconnection 7-Layer Reference Model mnemonic)
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post #4 of 30
I am very surprised, why it took such idea took this long to get into any OS. Matter of fact, most of us have laptops with two IP interfaces (Wireless and Wired) and it should be awesome that they use similar approach to maximize the pipes!
post #5 of 30
Off topic but io7 has dropped support for switching camera (front facing or back) in FaceTime. Very odd as it's a useful feature. Bring it back!!!!
post #6 of 30
no, no! this not innovation! Apple can no longer innovate - the analysts all say so. this is just ... fooling around. wifi never craps out! i say so!
post #7 of 30
@Zaba, What are you talking about? Its right to the left of the End button, looks like a camera with a circular set of arrows. Just touch that, and it flips.
post #8 of 30

I'm not entirely sure this is a great idea for everything. It might be good for Siri which won't use up massive amounts of bandwidth. But I would hate if when I'm on WiFi it jumps to my limited data plan to download a youtube video because my WiFi is weak.

 

If I don't have a signal, then just say ooops cannot connect!

post #9 of 30
OK, Apple, please bring this to Mac OS X (and OS X Server) so we can use this on our LANs
post #10 of 30

This is great feature I want for long time.

post #11 of 30

I always wanted to be connected to several wifi networks to optimize performance and reliability. Will this eventually solve this?

post #12 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnSmithSon View Post

This is great feature I want for long time.

Oh absolutely. Read RFC 6824 & 6182

Oops, wrong button
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post #13 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by hydr View Post

I always wanted to be connected to several wifi networks to optimize performance and reliability. Will this eventually solve this?

See ^
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post #14 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alfiejr View Post

no, no! this not innovation! Apple can no longer innovate - the analysts all say so. this is just ... fooling around. wifi never craps out! i say so!

 

And besides, Android has had this for years.

post #15 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by lkrupp View Post

And besides, Android has had this for years.

Then why does it always seems to be working so slow?
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post #16 of 30
Does this fix the problem I have been having since the iphone 4 of ios picking the 1 bar of cellular over the 300mbps speeds of my wifi?

I keep having to disable cellular data to get things to go through.
post #17 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by lkrupp View Post
 

 

And besides, Android has had this for years.

 

Quote:
 Apple's inclusion of Multipath TCP in iOS 7 is the first consumer product to ship with the technology.
Doodle Dice iPhone puzzle game: A fun, free physics-laden collection of dice games.  Greatest app made yet?  Perhaps young man... Perhaps.
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post #18 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by lkrupp View Post
 

 

And besides, Android has had this for years.

 

Its only been a standard since 2013 so androids couldn't have had this for years.

 

Also The Group responsible for multipatch tcp states Specifically that SIRI uses it in ios 7

post #19 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by dugbug View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by lkrupp View Post

 

And besides, Android has had this for years.
Quote:
 Apple's inclusion of Multipath TCP in iOS 7 is the first consumer product to ship with the technology.

LOL. Also, the RFC is from March 2011 (yes yes, 'years' can be two). Perhaps Android can't be considered a consumer product¿
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post #20 of 30
THE FOLLOWING IS A JOKE
Quote:
Originally Posted by lkrupp View Post

And besides, Android has had this for years.
FFS.

I note they now have both a Mobile and Carrier section in Settings, and with the lack of carrier customisation and built-in FaceTime calling, this says to me Dumb Pipes
post #21 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by RobM View Post

Great.
Lotsa stuff under the hood. No company implements new tech better than Apple.
Watched Americas cup this am on an iPad 2 - no lags, nothing different than before the upgrade other than everything appears faster

Have to say I'm getting more comfortable with the iOS7 now. Still think it needs some tweaks here and there - white keyboard on light grey is fine at night but needs more a darker shade in daylight.
Overall pretty good.

Couldn't agree more about the keyboard.,, surely Apple must change it or give us the option to have bold black font on the keys as in iOS 6....
post #22 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Scafe2 View Post

Couldn't agree more about the keyboard.,, surely Apple must change it or give us the option to have bold black font on the keys as in iOS 6....

Whilst we cannot change that, do take a peak at the Accessibility options; you might like some. It is strange how the keyboard is black hen searching from the springboard, but it's white when posting on this site.
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post #23 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by radster360 View Post

I am very surprised, why it took such idea took this long to get into any OS. Matter of fact, most of us have laptops with two IP interfaces (Wireless and Wired) and it should be awesome that they use similar approach to maximize the pipes!

 

Maybe I am missing something, but the wireless connection you speak off really is the same pipe as the wired pipe. Specifically, the Internet connection comes through somebody's Cable or DSL connection and then depending on peoples' equipment is offered a wireless connection to their hardwired connection. There is not two different sources of possible data transfer. Here we are talking about utilizing two different sources of wireless data (wi-fi and cellular). 

post #24 of 30

Multipath TCP would be useful for iTunes Radio when you start listening while still connected to your home Wi-Fi as you start the car, but then you drive away and the Wi-Fi signal drops, it has to switch over to cellular data. If they designed it right, Multipath TCP should be able to handle it transparently and the music won't be disrupted, provided the switch happens quicker than the length of the buffer. Without Multipath TCP, the situation has to be handled at a higher level in the 7 layer cake OSI model, perhaps even at the highest level, which is going to be less elegant and more likely to disrupt the music.

 

As for concern that a data-heavy app might use cellular without your knowledge, data-heavy apps should first ask permission to use cellular, and then in Settings --> Cellular you can turn on or off the permission for individual apps. The Music app and Facetime are among them.

post #25 of 30

Why is no one talking about the really important question here?

 

Namely, what patent troll owns all the completely unrelated patents to multipath TCP and will be suing Apple in roughly a year? Because if there’s one thing we know, it’s that whenever Apple does anything involving networks they’re sued.

Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already f*ed.

 

Reply

Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already f*ed.

 

Reply
post #26 of 30
What would be great is to be able to set apps to use specific connections. My work blocks facebook, so when my phone auto connects to the network the app tanks. It would be much less hassle to be able to tell certain apps not to use certain networks.
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post #27 of 30
Probably adds support for WiFi Direct streaming and AirDrop, without either end having to drop the existing WiFi network connection.
post #28 of 30

Multipath TCP Requires both the client and the server to work. That is why only a few Apple Services have this at the moment. I think Apple are testing their implementation quietly at scale.

 

And please provide prove that Android has had this for years. Because even Mainline Linux hasn't had this landed. And it will still takes years of work, trial and error, testing before this can be massively deployed.

post #29 of 30
Finally comming to an os? The Linux kernel has already implemented support for the multpath TCP protocol, Actually android 4.3 is even running on a compatible kernel
post #30 of 30
Originally Posted by Randall Klein View Post
Finally comming to an os? The Linux kernel has already implemented support for the multpath TCP protocol, Actually android 4.3 is even running on a compatible kernel

 

Here’s the actual question, though: Does Android support it?

 

Transitive property of equality doesn’t work here.

Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already f*ed.

 

Reply

Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already f*ed.

 

Reply
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