Re: Include SVG in future Mobile Services Guidelines

Thanks for including me on your email.

You may already know all of this, but I'll give a quick recap on the status 
of SVG:

1) SVG 1.0 became a W3C Recommendation on Sept. 4

2) A rechartered SVG Working Group began work in June 2001. The work 
includes (among other things):
         a) SVG 1.1, which represents both a modularization of SVG 1.0 plus 
a small number of new features deemed critical for mobile devices -- thus
         b) Mobile SVG, which will consist of (probably) two subset 
definitions (aka "profiles") of SVG 1.1. The two profiles under 
consideration are currently called SVG Basic (targeted at PDAs and 
tomorrow's high-end cell phones) and SVG Tiny (targeted at lower end mobile 

First public releases of requirements documents for SVG 1.1/2.0, SVG Basic 
and SVG Tiny can be found at:

SVG 1.1/2.0 Requirements:
SVG Mobile Requirements:

In summary, there is a strong effort in the SVG Working Group to address 
the needs of mobile devices, and now is a perfect time to send in a list 
what the GSM feels it needs from Mobile SVG.


At 03:44 PM 9/10/01 -0700, Aron Roberts wrote:
>Dear Mr. Kramer,
>   This is to encourage the GSM Association to consider adding support for 
> the W3C's Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG) specification in a future 
> revision of the Mobile Services (also referred to as "M-Services") Guidelines.
>   From what I understand, these guidelines represent an effort by your 
> Association to encourage mobile phone handset manufacturers to support a 
> minimum set of specifications for access to Internet services in the next 
> generation of their products.  Since the GSM Association claims to 
> include "the world's leading network operators who together provide 
> service to more than 70 per cent of global mobile phone users," these 
> recommendations presumably have at least the potential to profoundly 
> shape the next several generations of mobile phones.
>   Edd Dumbill, editor of, wrote today in a news item at 
> <> that:
>>SVG, an XML application for the representation of vector images, and has 
>>found early favor and deployment with software vendor Adobe. ... Some of 
>>its strongest opportunities are in cross-device display: SVG's 
>>scalability allowing for use on devices from high-resolution printers to 
>>tiny cell phone screens.
>   I agree strongly with Edd's conclusion in his second sentence 
> above.  Because of its inherent scalability, SVG would seem to be a 
> natural for accommodating display devices of any resolution and size, 
> including mobile phones.  And, as an XML application, SVG images are (at 
> least conceptually) capable of being integrated cleanly into a sister XML 
> specification, XHTML Basic.  The latter is already one of the core 
> specifications included in the Mobile Services Guidelines.
>   Of course, the processing power required to support all of SVG's 
> features, as well as the runtime environment required for programs or 
> scripts to render SVG statically or interactively, might be daunting for 
> even the forthcoming generation of mobile phone handsets.  There was a 
> thoughtful commentary on this theme by Ben Hutchings, which appeared in a 
> discussion list on future Web- and Java-enabled mobile phones at:
>   If the concerns that Ben expressed have validity, however, then it 
> might still be possible for the GSM Association to support a subset of 
> that graphics specification on mobile devices.
>   Mr. Dumbill alluded to some developments in this direction when he 
> wrote, in his May 2001 report from WWW10 
> <>:
>>... there is already much interest in the next version of the [SVG] 
>>specification. Features likely to be in that new version include more 
>>support for small devices, not just PDAs but small devices like cell phones ...
>   In fact, it appears that the next generation of the SVC specification 
> -- SVG 2.0 -- is already intended to address this need, by specifying 
> modular subsets ("profiles") of SVG, at lest one of which is intended to 
> be highly suitable for mobile phones and other such devices:
>   and
>   If you and others at the GSM Association have not already done so -- 
> and you may well have -- I'd encourage you to begin initiating contacts 
> with the participants in W3C's SVG2 Working Group to determine whether, 
> and if so, when it might be practical to support SVG in a future revision 
> of the Mobile Services Guidelines.
>Aron Roberts  Workstation Software Support Group . 221 Evans Hall
>               University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720-3808 USA
>      . +1 510-642-5974 . fax 510-643-5385
>P.S. When referring to the Mobile Services Guidelines above, I'm referring 
>specifically to version 3.0.0 of the "M-Services Guidelines," dated 
>2001-05-31,  a Microsoft Word document which can be downloaded from a link 
>on the "Mobile Services - Questions & Answers" page at 
>This document lists several other image and video formats on pages 15-17, 
>but SVG doesn't seem to be listed, even in passing, anywhere in this document.

Received on Tuesday, 11 September 2001 11:30:50 UTC