Google's Nest team helps create Brillo & Weave, to simplify the connected Internet of Things

Posted:
in General Discussion edited May 2015
Seeking to connect everything around us, from household appliances to public parking meters, Google on Thursday announced Brillo, a low-level operating system that can run on a range of devices, as well as Weave, a communications layer that will allow devices to talk to one another.




Based on the "lower levels of Android," Brillo is a small, flexible operating system that features just the basics needed for devices to share information. According to Google, it will feature minimal system requirements and broad silicon support.

The name Brillo, in reference to the scouring pad used for cleaning dishes, was chosen because Google has stripped away and polished Android down to a smaller, more flexible size. Doing so, the company hopes, will make it easier for device manufacturers to create appliances, accessories and more that can seamlessly talk to one another, to smartphones, tablets, wearable electronics and otherwise.




Another key component of Google's "Internet of Things" strategy is Weave, a communications layer by which devices can talk to each other. Weave will be cross-platform, meaning it can work with devices that are running Brillo, or any other low-end operating system.

Finally, Google aims to have standardized setup for any connected device through Android smartphones. Users will be able to choose a device, connect to it, and control it with a simplified, automated setup process for new accessories.

Development of these projects was spearheaded by Nest, maker of a smart thermostat, which was ,a href="http://appleinsider.com/articles/14/01/13/google-buys-ex-apple-nest-for-32b">acquired by Google for $3.2 billion in 2014. Next was founded by ex-Apple executive Tony Fadell, who played an integral role in the creation of the first iPod.




Google already took a stab at simplifying the "Internet of Things" market back in 2011, when the company unveiled its "[email protected]" initiative. That was subsequently abandoned, however, and has now been apparently replaced by Brillo and Weave.

The Brillo developer preview is scheduled to become available in the third quarter of 2015, while a full stack for Weave will launch in the fourth quarter of this year.

Both Brillo and Weave were announced as part of Google's I/O conference on Thursday. There, the company also formally announced Android Pay, which works very similarly to Apple Pay, complete with fingerprint sensor authentication, NFC compatibility, and partnerships with major credit card providers.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 26
    MacProMacPro Posts: 17,901member
    Meanwhile Google's R&D team eagerly await Apple's WWDC so they can learn what to develop next.
  • Reply 2 of 26

    Complete waste of time. If you want a highly secure and reliable OS you'd pick QNX. And if you're going really small (embedded microcontrollers), then there's a wide range of OSes and tools to use. Why exactly do we need yet ANOTHER embedded OS?

     

    Oh right, so Google can have another source of information to mine.

  • Reply 3 of 26
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member

    "Broad silicon support and easy to secure" but will the home automation devices be certified? That is the difference with Apple HomeKit, the manufacturers have to comply with all of Apple's requirements in order to be able to use HomeKit protocols. Google usually just lets OEMs do whatever they want so the consumer does not have any guarantee that it will 'just work', and it certainly won't work on iOS. As we all know, iOS users are the primary target market for stuff like home automation because they are generally more affluent than Android users.

  • Reply 4 of 26
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 19,817member
    mstone wrote: »
    "Broad silicon support and easy to secure" but will the home automation devices be certified? That is the difference with Apple HomeKit, the manufacturers have to comply with all of Apple's requirements in order to be able to use HomeKit protocols. Google usually just lets OEMs do whatever they want so the consumer does not have any guarantee that it will 'just work', and it certainly won't work on iOS. As we all know, iOS users are the primary target market for stuff like home automation because they are generally more affluent than Android users.
    Weave was announced as being cross-platform.
  • Reply 5 of 26
    penchantedpenchanted Posts: 1,070member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Gatorguy View Post





    Weave was announced as being cross-platform.



    "Weave will be cross-platform, meaning it can work with devices that are running Brillo, or any other low-end operating system"

  • Reply 6 of 26
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Gatorguy View Post





    Weave was announced as being cross-platform.



    "...any other low end OS"

     

    Somehow I did not get the impression of iOS into that statement, plus, it says you need an Android device to set up and configure any home device using Brillo/Weave.

  • Reply 7 of 26
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 19,817member
    mstone wrote: »

    "...any other low end OS"

    Somehow I did not get the impression of iOS into that statement, plus, it says you need an Android device to set up and configure any home device using Brillo/Weave.
    "Google also announced Weave, a common protocol developers can use to make devices talk to each other. For instance, a door manufacturer can define a term in Weave (like “lock” or “unlock”), and all other devices in the connected home will understand it.

    Weave is available cross-platform, Google says"

    I don't know that rules out anything used with iOS. tho I'm sure Apple would prefer it that way. Cross-platform solutions aren't typically their thing, tho there's been a rare exception or two. Personally I think something like Weave would be pretty helpful to both buyers and automation producers/providers.

    EDIT: Google Cloud messaging coming to iOS??
  • Reply 8 of 26
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Gatorguy View Post





    "Google also announced Weave, a common protocol developers can use to make devices talk to each other. For instance, a door manufacturer can define a term in Weave (like “lock” or “unlock”), and all other devices in the connected home will understand it.



    Weave is available cross-platform, Google says"

    When we see the Brillo/Weave app on the App Store, I'll believe it. Until then color me skeptical.

  • Reply 9 of 26
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 19,817member
    mstone wrote: »
    When we see the Brillo/Weave app on the App Store, I'll believe it. Until then color me skeptical.
    I don't really disagree. It's not something Apple would welcome I'm sure, even if it were possible.
  • Reply 10 of 26
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member
    Meanwhile Google's R&D team eagerly await Apple's WWDC so they can learn what to develop next.

    Like the Google Now competitor (code named 'Proactive') that Apple is allegedly announcing at WWDC? When it comes to software features all companies seem to be copying each other these days.
  • Reply 11 of 26
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Gatorguy View Post





    I don't really disagree. It's not something Apple would welcome I'm sure, even if it were possible.



    I'm sure it would be possible and probably acceptable from a legal standpoint, but the advantage of a HomeKit ecosystem is that it will include ?TV as a secure remote entry point, Siri integration, and OEM certification protocols. I am making a huge assumption in saying that iOS users are more likely to buy home automation products than Android users, so it is just speculation on my part. I wonder if there are any surveys on Android families vs. Apple families in terms of home ownership vs renting. 

  • Reply 12 of 26
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post





    Like the Google Now competitor (code named 'Proactive') that Apple is allegedly announcing at WWDC? When it comes to software features all companies seem to be copying each other these days.

     

    Not sure why you're conflating google's copying with "all companies" (with Apple being an obvious part of this). Particularly in the case of google now; Apple had Voice Control, then Siri, which google even mocked as not a good idea. Then of course, as usual, google copies Apple with google now, throws a bunch of features at it, and then now there are idiots out there are claiming that Apple is copying google now (I'm not referring to you). Apple has had similar features for a while, and not just Siri, but the "Today" panel, which is very good at predicting patters, such as common travel routes and times. Now, because Apple is expanding on this idea, people (e.g. 9to5mac) are implying or stating that Apple is copying google now. It makes no sense.* Apple is just improving the "Today" panel, incorporating Siri, and moving it to the left of the homescreen. It was fairly obvious Apple was going to do something like this, as they've gradually added to the user interface: initially swiping left for different homescreens, then swipe down for notifications and "Today", then swipe up for control panel, and now swipe right to access 'Proactive.'

     

    *Particularly given google's constant copying of Apple: the entire smartphone UI for starters, but also the App Store, Siri, tablets, laptops, several failed attempts at copying Apple TV, mini headless computers that look exactly like the mac mini, Apple's particular implementation of Apple Pay, on and on... Apple paves the road, and google follows as closely as possible. On the occasions they try to forge their own path, they always get stuck in the dirt (google wallet, google tv, google glass, google gear...)

     

    Edit: added a few things to the footnote

  • Reply 13 of 26
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 19,817member
    Not sure why you're conflating google's copying with "all companies" (with Apple being an obvious part of this). Particularly in the case of google now; Apple had Voice Control, then Siri, which google even mocked as not a good idea.
    FWIW Google Now is far beyond just a voice actions feature like Siri. You probably meant to refer to Google Voice.
  • Reply 14 of 26
    jason98jason98 Posts: 761member
    We proudly announce android pay. And now you can pay without having to open any apps using a fingerprint sensor... And this is one more way we make a world a better place... Long round of applause...
  • Reply 15 of 26
    cpsrocpsro Posts: 2,432member

    Brillo my ass. You couldn't Android Pay me to use that.

  • Reply 16 of 26
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 19,817member
    cpsro wrote: »
    Brillo my ass. You couldn't Android Pay me to use that.
    You wouldn't be. It's designed for manufacturers to use in creating connected products for the home and office isn't it?
  • Reply 17 of 26

    Right on, Eric. Not sure if there is anything else out there as secure, reliable and proven as QNX.

  • Reply 18 of 26
    ericthehalfbeeericthehalfbee Posts: 3,965member
    gatorguy wrote: »
    You wouldn't be. It's designed for manufacturers to use in creating connected products for the home and office isn't it?
    Which is why Brillo is a stupid idea. I'm seriously wondering WTH Google was thinking when they created this. Why re-invent the wheel?
  • Reply 19 of 26
    d4njvrzfd4njvrzf Posts: 797member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by penchanted View Post

     



    "Weave will be cross-platform, meaning it can work with devices that are running Brillo, or any other low-end operating system"


    I hear Ubuntu is getting into the IoT fad too (http://www.zdnet.com/article/ubuntu-jumps-into-internet-of-things-with-acer-ge-and-microsoft/).

  • Reply 20 of 26
    ecatsecats Posts: 272member
    I wonder how google feels having to develop all of these kits which are outside their business and comfort zone.

    See these product make sense for apple, because they sell hardware. For Google, these are just extensions to Android, which is an arms length way of keeping people looking at ads.

    I wonder how far they're going to follow apple here, because it's already past the level of ridiculous, and I can't wait for the day when google randomly spring cleans half of these.
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