Technology heavyweights Atmel Corporation, Broadcom Corporation, Dell, Intel Corporation, Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., and Wind River, have joined forces to launch the Open Interconnect Consortium (OIC), a body that will shape the connectivity requirements for the billions of devices that will make up the Internet of Things (IoT).
According to Glen Robson, vice president and CTO for Client Solutions at Dell, “The explosion of the Internet of Things is a transformation that will have a major impact on our power to do more through technology. Having a connectivity framework that is open, secure and manageable is critical to delivering the foundational elements of that transformation.”
Robson added,“Consumers and businesses alike will need a strong base upon which to build the vast array of solutions enabled by a global Internet of Things. From our earliest days, Dell has embraced industry standards as a means to bring the best technology solutions to our customers, and the Open Interconnect Consortium is very much aligned with this model.”
OIC is focused on defining a common communications framework based on industry standard technologies to wirelessly connect and intelligently manage the flow of information among personal computing and emerging IoT devices, regardless of form factor, operating system or service provider.
The partners will contribute software and capacity to develop a protocol specification, open source implementation, and a certification program, all with a view of accelerating the development of the IoT. The OIC specification will encompass a range of connectivity solutions, utilizing existing and emerging wireless standards and will be designed to be compatible with a variety of operating systems.
Leaders from a broad range of industry vertical segments – from smart home and office solutions to automotive and more – will participate in the program. This will help ensure that OIC specifications and open source implementations will help companies design products that intelligently, reliably and securely manage and exchange information under changing conditions, power and bandwidth, and even without an Internet connection.
The first OIC open source code will target the specific requirements of smart home and office solutions. For example, the specifications could make it simple to remotely control and receive notifications from smart home appliances or enterprise devices using securely provisioned smartphones, tablets or PCs.
International Data Corporation expects the installed base of the Internet of Things will be approximately 212 billion “things” globally by the end of 2020. This is expected to include 30.1 billion installed “connected (autonomous) things” in 2020.
Doug Fisher, Intel corporate vice president and general manager of the Software and Services Group said,“The rise and ultimate success of the Internet of Things depends on the ability for devices and systems to securely and reliably interconnect and share information,” . “This requires common frameworks, based on truly open, industry standards. Our goal in founding this new consortium is to solve the challenge of interoperable connectivity for the Internet of Things without tying the ecosystem to one company’s solution.”
Possible consumer solutions include the ability to remotely control household systems to save money and conserve energy. In the enterprise, employees and visiting suppliers might securely collaborate while interacting with screens and other devices in a meeting room. Specifications for additional IoT opportunities including automotive, healthcare and industrial are expected to follow.
“Open source is about collaboration and about choice. The Open Interconnect Consortium is yet another proof point how open source helps to fuel innovation,” said Jim Zemlin, executive director of The Linux Foundation. “We look forward to the OIC’s contribution in fostering an open environment to support the billions of connected devices coming online.”
Additional member companies including other leading appliance and device manufacturers, service and solution providers, chipset manufacturers and more are expected to join OIC in the coming months.
“In the Internet of Things era, everything – from PCs, smartphones and tablets to home and industrial appliances and new wearable form factors – should effortlessly connect and communicate with each other, regardless of who makes the device,” said Jong-deok Choi, executive vice president and deputy head of Software R&D Center at Samsung Electronics. “We invite other industry leaders, whatever their background and vertical specialism, to join us in defining and embracing a common communications framework for the Internet of Things.”