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Tech giants form open standard working group for smart home devices

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Dubbed “Project Connected Home over IP,” the standard hopes to simplify development for smart home device manufacturers.

If you have multiple smart home devices, you have likely experienced the pain of needing to install multiple apps or have devices that don’t talk to each other properly. Amazon, Apple, Google, and the Zigbee Alliance have apparently heard our pain and have formed a working group to develop an open standard for smart home devices.

Dubbed “Project Connected Home over IP,” the standard hopes to simplify development for smart home device manufacturers. At the same time, this should also increase compatibility for consumers.

The industry working group will take an open-source approach for the development and implementation of a new, unified connectivity protocol. The project intends to use contributions from market-tested smart home technologies from Amazon, Apple, Google, Zigbee Alliance, and others. The decision to leverage these technologies is expected to accelerate the development of the protocol, and deliver benefits to manufacturers and consumers faster.

Apple press release

While you should recognize Apple, Amazon, and Google as the big three of the group, the Zigbee Alliance has some pretty heavy hitters as well. The group includes companies that include IKEA, Legrand, NXP Semiconductors, Resideo, Samsung SmartThings, Schneider Electric, Signify (formerly Philips Lighting), Silicon Labs, Somfy, and Wulian. All the aforementioned companies will also be contributing to the project.

One concern when a new standards working group is formed is that of compatibility for existing devices. The Project Connected Home over IP working group plans to develop an open standard that works with existing technologies, hopefully alleviating those concerns. Once complete, the open standard will make it easier for companies to develop devices that are compatible with multiple smart home and voice assistants instead of having to pick and choose which services they will be compatible with.

What do you think about the news that Apple, Amazon, Google, and the Zigbee Alliance are coming together to develop an open standard for smart home devices? Let us know in the comments below or on Twitter, Facebook, or MeWe.

  Source: Apple
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