Apple, Amazon, Google, and Zigbee Alliance to Develop Open Standard for Smart Home Devices [Updated]

Apple, Amazon, Google, and the Zigbee Alliance today announced a new working group that plans to develop and promote the adoption of a new IP-based connectivity standard for smart home products, with a focus on increased compatibility, security, and simplified development for manufacturers.


Zigbee Alliance board member companies such as IKEA, Legrand, NXP Semiconductors, Resideo, SmartThings, Schneider Electric, Signify, Silicon Labs, Somfy, and Wulian will also contribute to the project.

The so-called "Project Connected Home over IP" aims to make it easier for device manufacturers to build devices that are compatible with smart home and voice services such as Siri, Alexa, Google Assistant, and others by defining a specific set of IP-based networking technologies for device certification.

The new standard will incorporate existing smart home technologies, such as Apple's HomeKit and Google's Weave and Thread:

We're contributing two of our market-tested and open-source smart home technologies, Weave and Thread. Both are built on IP and have been integrated into millions of homes around the world. Weave, an application protocol, works over many networks like Thread, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth Low Energy, and even cellular. Even when devices are on different networks, Weave allows them all to securely work with each other.

The new connectivity standard will be open source and royalty free, with code to be maintained on GitHub. The working group has a goal to release a draft specification and a preliminary reference implementation in late 2020.

For consumers, this should ultimately lead to more smart home accessories that support multiple platforms like HomeKit and Alexa.

Update: Resideo, maker of Honeywell-branded smart home products, has announced that it has joined the Zigbee Alliance. Alongside other members, Resideo will play a role in the Connected Home over IP project.

Top Rated Comments

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16 weeks ago


Score: 66 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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16 weeks ago
About damn time. So many cheaper smart devices (bulbs, plugs etc) are Google/Alexa only. The Homekit versions cost double which just isnt worth it usually.
Score: 37 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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16 weeks ago
Wow... didn’t see this coming. Great news.
Score: 25 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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16 weeks ago
I was just saying that we need a home standard, because it’s getting confusing for the average customer
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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16 weeks ago
Not sure if this is the best move for Apple. I’ll take security over product availability or price any day. Apple seems to be the only one with security at the forefront.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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16 weeks ago


Not sure if this is the best move for Apple. I’ll take security over product availability or price any day. Apple seems to be the only one with security at the forefront.

Hopefully Apple's in the driver's seat on this new group. The last thing I want is Amazon dictating what can and can't be done with my data.


Most homekit stuff is ridiculously expensive. I get security issues for things like cameras, but do I care if Google/Amazon/etc knows my smartplug lamp is on or off? Or how much electricity its using? No so much.

Not when its $10 vs $40 (homkit version) for the device. $40 per outlet REALLY adds up. Same with bulbs, do people care if its "secure" really? What possible personal info is out there from a bulb being on or off?

So extrapolate from your statement, you'd be totally fine if I got on your WiFi network, right? Cause there can't possibly be any personal info floating around in the air in your home, right?

---

It's entirely possible for someone to use an IoT device as a pivot point on a network... or manipulate those devices. Smart devices aren't limited to just light bulbs. Someone could manipulate your furnace and roast you or turn your lights on at 3am.

EDIT: OR TERRORIZE YOUR DAUGHTER
https://www.androidauthority.com/amazon-ring-hack-1067500/

Or unlock your door when you're not home.

But yeah, totally no personal info from an insecure bulb.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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