In order to properly understand the significance of the SyncML Initiative, perhaps a brief history is in order. The SyncML Initiative was publicly announced in February 2000. The purpose was to allow for the creation of an open standard for data synchronization. SyncML Data Synchronization 1.0 was published in December 2000. This was seen as a very good first effort, with a few important features left for later.
Another important area not yet addressed was device management. A group was formed within SyncML in May 2001. The group was formed from companies that were not only Sponsors of SyncML, but also of a new rank, Promoters. Promoters were companies that were not on the Board of SyncML, but wanted to work on the specifications. Previously, only Sponsor companies were allowed to work on the specifications.
In February 2002, version 1.1 was released, including updates to data synchronization, and introduced device management. The data synchronization release included support for large object delivery and a split of the Representation Protocol Specification into two documents: a Common Representation document and a Data Synchronization Usage Representation document. The device management release also used the Common Representation document as a basis for their Device Management Usage Representation document.
The SyncML Initiative was not satisfied with just publishing a specification, though. In addition to the specifications, an interoperability process was defined and implemented. The first test of the interoperability process took place in February 2000, at the ETSI facility in Sophia Antipolis, France. The first SyncFest took place in April 2001 in Dallas, Texas. SyncML also created a semiautomated test suite to make conformance testing easier and more reliable. This test suite, called the SyncML Conformance Test Suite, or SCTS, was built with the intention of testing both Clients and Servers. SCTS development started in November 2000 and was later made a requirement for earning the SyncML Compliance mark.