Apple, Google and Amazon have announced their plans to team up to make smart home tech easier to use. These tech giants want develop an open-source smart home standard that ensures that devices work together, making the development of new devices easier, and keep everything secure in the process.
The companies together with Zigbee Alliance, another smart home protocol maker, will work to ensure that smart home products are compatible with many different smartphones and voice assistants.
The three tech giants have support from the smart home industry at large. They are forming a group called Project Connected Home over IP which will be joined by Zigbee Alliance and its board members including Ikea, Samsung SmartThings, and the Signify, the company behind Philips Hue.
Technology like Apple’s HomeKit, Amazon’s Alexa, and Google’s Weave, will be contributed to the new standard with its initial draft intended for release in late 2020. The system will simplify product development and reduce costs for developers by giving them one standard for building their products.
The standard will work with existing protocol like Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. Devices will most likely have to support Wi-Fi, Bluetooth Low Energy, or Thread in order to work with the system at all. How a device will connect is up to the manufacturer to decide. The standard will also be based around IP, or internet protocol which, according to the group, makes it ideal for sending messages from a smart home device to another device, app, or service with end-to-end security and privacy.
If the work of the Project Connected Home over IP group proves successful, customers confidence that their device of choice will work in their home and that they will be able to setup and control it with their preferred system is ensured.