Switchboard Multiplayer Gaming for Smartphones By Microsoft Research

Microsoft Research presented a paper entitled "Switchboard: A Matchmaking System for Multiplayer Mobile Games" during MobiSys 2011, the ninth international conference on mobile systems, applications, and services last week.Microsoft wants to make gaming one of the big features of its Windows Phone 7 operating system. Now, according to this newly revealed Microsoft research paper has […]

Microsoft Research presented a paper entitled "Switchboard: A Matchmaking System for Multiplayer Mobile Games" during MobiSys 2011, the ninth international conference on mobile systems, applications, and services last week.

Microsoft wants to make gaming one of the big features of its Windows Phone 7 operating system. Now, according to this newly revealed Microsoft research paper has a new idea about how to improve matchmaking in mobile phone games.

According to the paper, Switchboard is a brainchild of Victor Bahl and a team of scientists and interns from Microsoft Research and Duke University headed by Sharad Agarwal from Microsoft Research Redmond. Bahl has been working on ideas to provide smartphone users the ability to engage in live gaming since 2009.

"Switchboard will allow phones to check to see how potential phones from other players will handle latency. It states, "Switchboard finds suitable game candidates by 'pinging' their phones to estimate latency: the time needed to move a packet of data." Much like latency affects PC gamers in their online games, a high latency number for a phone game will likely make playing that game hard while online. The idea is for games to have as low of a latency number as possible for games, especially for action titles."

"Switchboard is a proof-of-concept demonstrating that a phone-to-phone service with strict latency requirements can be built. One hurdle, however, is that a smartphone needs a public IP address to connect it to other phones. Although, Switchboard was developed using 3G wireless networks, it will work perfectly well with high-speed 4G networks being implemented."

We've embedded below full research paper for online reading:

You can download the full researc paper here (pdf).