SAN JOSE, Calif. ó Even before its $3.2 billion acquisition by Google, Nest Labs was quietly building into all its products a low-power mesh networking protocol. Now it hopes to make it an industry standard, called Thread, for home automation devices.
A handful of chip and system makers, including ARM, Freescale, Silicon Labs, and Samsung, have joined the ad hoc Thread Group led by Nest. It aims to release the royalty-free protocol this year to anyone who joins the group.
Thread is one of a growing number of efforts to unify or supply some missing piece for the highly fragmented Internet of Things sector. In an interview with EE Times, Chris Boross, a technical marketing manager with Nest and president of the Thread Group, explained why current protocols for consumer home automation products don't meet its requirements.
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— Rick Merritt is the Silicon Valley Bureau Chief of EE Times.