Samsung, Intel Seek to Establish Common Standard for the Internet of Things

by Matt Klassen on July 9, 2014

There will be a time when all of our mobile gadgets, appliances, and other technological do-dads will all speak to each other, forming a seamless and comprehensive digital reality the dominates our entire lives. But as it stands this vision of our connected future operates more like the Tower of Babel, devices all trying to work towards a common goal yet speaking totally different languages.

So how does one stem the chaos this fledgling technology market is threatening to create? Well, the same way anyone solves anything in this bureaucracy driven world we live in, you form a group. Technology heavyweights Samsung, Intel and Broadcom among others, have announced the formation of a new non-profit group called the Open Interconnect Consortium (OIC), tasked with establishing common standards and certification for devices involved in the ever-growing Internet of Things.

But that isn’t to say that such a group isn’t necessary, particularly as some particular members of this group have their own operating system standards to offer, as one ironclad truth of the technology market is that the first one to establish a common standard that secures mass adoption will be the one who dictates, at least initially, the direction of that market. It happened in the BetaMax vs. VCS fight, it happened in the BluRay vs. HD DVD fight, it happened in the iOS vs. everyone else smartphone fight, and it’ll happen again with the Internet of Things, the consortium just hopes it will be on the winning side.

The term Internet of Things is a developing concept within the technology industry wherein everyday objects and electronic devices—for instance, refrigerators, thermostats, light bulbs, toilets—are imbued with Internet connectivity generally via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi. These connected devices, in turn, generally connect to one’s smartphone, if they’re compatible of course.

As mentioned, the consortium seeks to address the issue of communication between these devices, as different gadgets in our increasingly connected everything existence don’t all use the same operating system, thus can’t ‘talk’ to each other. “It’s a fundamental problem that needs to be solved to have all these devices talking to each other,” Vijay Nagarajan, Broadcom’s director of product marketing, said about OIC’s creation.

The OIC is not the first consortium to push into this market, however, as earlier this year the non-profit Linux Foundation announced the formation of the AllSeen Alliance. In both cases the goal is the same, “to provide a common language for these devices and objects so they can more easily connect and communicate with each other.”

In fact, most analysts agree that in order for the Internet of Things to really take off as the latest market in the technology industry there needs to be some common ground for companies to work from. “If you don’t align around some standards, it will actually slow the adoption and delay industries to participate and take advantage around these kinds of capabilities,” explained Doug Fisher, general manager of Intel’s software and services group.

Truth be told, the sky is truly the limit for the Internet of Things, as science fiction has worked overtime to provide us with a glimpse of what a future where every facet of our lives is seamlessly connected to and through technology will look like, the only real thing standing in the way of such a future is coming to some agreement as to how it will operate…no small task indeed.

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Written by: Matt Klassen. www.digitcom.ca. Follow TheTelecomBlog.com by: RSS, Twitter, Facebook, or YouTube.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Robert Friedman July 9, 2014 at 8:46 pm

Samsung builds nice TVs period. They had to bail on Knox had $6M worth of phones stolen in June in the UK and $6M worth of phones and tablets stolen this month in Brazil. Whatever platform moves forward it should have QNX at the heart. It’s secure runs most automobiles, and a few other things like nuclear subs and nuclear power plants.

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