Apple, Amazon, Google, Zigbee Alliance networking protocol on track for 2021 release

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The Apple, Amazon, Google, and Zigbee Alliance home automation networking effort appears to be about to bear fruit, with a release of the new smart home communication standard expected in 2021.

'Project Connected Home over IP' goes live in 2021


The Zigbee Alliance has announced that it will release the standard for "Project Connected Home over IP" in 2021. While the coronavirus has put them slightly behind their original release date of the end of 2020, they are on track to release a draft specification by late 2020.

Project Connected Home over IP is "built around a shared belief that smart home devices should be secure, reliable, and seamless to use." The project's stated goals are to enable communication across smart home devices, mobile apps, and cloud services and to define a specific set of IP-based networking technologies for device certification.

The protocol is not expected to replace HomeKit or other vendor's proprietary solutions but is designed to complement existing technologies with the goal of providing safer IoT integration. The group also points out that there is no specific focus intended for any company, and members may implement the technologies as they like. The standard should make it easier for manufacturers to build devices that are compatible in a smart home with services like Siri, Google Assistant, and Alexa.

The Project Connected Home over IP groups as a whole says that some companies might focus their product offerings on the protocol over Wi-Fi/Ethernet, while others might target the protocol over Thread or BLE, and still others might support a combination.

The goal of the first specification release will be Wi-Fi, up to and including 802.11ax (aka Wi-Fi 6), that is 802.11a/b/g/n/ac/ax; Thread over 802.15.4-2006 at 2.4 GHz; and IP implementations for Bluetooth Low Energy, versions 4.1, 4.2, and 5.0 for the network and physical wireless protocols. Future development is expected in regard to Ethernet and cellular technologies.

The devices targeted at first will include lighting and electrical products, HVAC controls, and security and access -- including doors, locks, security systems, and more. Also included will be TVs, automated window coverings, access points, bridges, and hubs.

The industry working group has been taking an open-source approach to develop and implement a new, unified connectivity protocol. The member companies expect that the joint approach to developing the technology will accelerate the protocol's development and deliver benefits to manufacturers and consumers faster.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 8
    BeatsBeats Posts: 2,921member
    Apple could have had this market to themselves but they drug their feet......

    Yes I'm all for monopolies who deserve it, are secure and are the innovator.
    razorpit
  • Reply 2 of 8
    I don't think I trust Zigbee anymore. My 17 Hue devices, mostly bulbs, use Zigbee's protocol. Every morning all my devices work, but as they day goes on more and more are "not responding" and when I try to ask Siri to turn off all the lights, sometimes as many as 14 of 17 lights aren't responding. I'm desperate to find something that works because I love HomeKit/Siri... when it works. Any suggestions? I'm guessing it's interference from the neighbors in my building. Or it could be my Hue Bridge failing, which I've rebooted and that doesn't change anything.

    watto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 8
    I don't think I trust Zigbee anymore. My 17 Hue devices, mostly bulbs, use Zigbee's protocol. Every morning all my devices work, but as they day goes on more and more are "not responding" and when I try to ask Siri to turn off all the lights, sometimes as many as 14 of 17 lights aren't responding. I'm desperate to find something that works because I love HomeKit/Siri... when it works. Any suggestions? I'm guessing it's interference from the neighbors in my building. Or it could be my Hue Bridge failing, which I've rebooted and that doesn't change anything.


    How robust is your Wi-Fi. Do you need or use a mesh Wi-Fi?  
    We originally split our mesh Wi-Fi into two separate channels but found some devices with continually disconnect. When we set up our Wi-Fi with one single channel it allowed 2.4 and 5 GHz to respectively connect to the appropriate channel in this solved a lot of connectivity issues in our home.

    urahararazorpitwatto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 8
    I don't think I trust Zigbee anymore. My 17 Hue devices, mostly bulbs, use Zigbee's protocol. Every morning all my devices work, but as they day goes on more and more are "not responding" and when I try to ask Siri to turn off all the lights, sometimes as many as 14 of 17 lights aren't responding. I'm desperate to find something that works because I love HomeKit/Siri... when it works. Any suggestions? I'm guessing it's interference from the neighbors in my building. Or it could be my Hue Bridge failing, which I've rebooted and that doesn't change anything.

    Had similar problems at one point - found it was interference from numerous nearby competing WiFis ... did a couple “Hue channel changes” and problems disappeared.
    urahararazorpitwatto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 8
    dchender said:
    I don't think I trust Zigbee anymore. My 17 Hue devices, mostly bulbs, use Zigbee's protocol. Every morning all my devices work, but as they day goes on more and more are "not responding" and when I try to ask Siri to turn off all the lights, sometimes as many as 14 of 17 lights aren't responding. I'm desperate to find something that works because I love HomeKit/Siri... when it works. Any suggestions? I'm guessing it's interference from the neighbors in my building. Or it could be my Hue Bridge failing, which I've rebooted and that doesn't change anything.

    Had similar problems at one point - found it was interference from numerous nearby competing WiFis ... did a couple “Hue channel changes” and problems disappeared.
    That is a fascinating tip. I will look into it. I have both an Apple Time capsule Wi-Fi and my Internet service provider’s wireless modem but I don’t remember which one I’ve configured my Hue to use. If this works I’ll let you know. I suppose I could also test using my other Wi-Fi service. EDIT: I changed both the WIFI (by changing cables) and the Zigbee channel (using the Hue App) at the same time. Changing two things at the same time may not be a good idea because now I won't know which change fixed my problem. But thanks to everyone for the tips.
    edited September 2020 razorpitwatto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 8
    dewmedewme Posts: 4,188member
    I'd like to see Zigbee and ZWave-Plus consolidated into a single unifying standard. I've been nothing but impressed with the reliability and ease-of-commissioning that ZWave-Plus offers. Zigbee is an outlier for me. This is an area where a heavy hitter like Apple could actually leverage its influence to force a consolidation, both through market forces but also by contributing engineers to help with the effort. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 8
    MplsPMplsP Posts: 3,617member
    dewme said:
    I'd like to see Zigbee and ZWave-Plus consolidated into a single unifying standard. I've been nothing but impressed with the reliability and ease-of-commissioning that ZWave-Plus offers. Zigbee is an outlier for me. This is an area where a heavy hitter like Apple could actually leverage its influence to force a consolidation, both through market forces but also by contributing engineers to help with the effort. 
    Agreed - the smart home market is rather fragmented with standards; it would be nice to have a unified standard. That would encourage more development and lower prices

    razorpittony411lawatto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 8
    After changing both my WIFI device and my Zigbee frequency (from channel 15 to 25) the lights are working tonight. So I'll assume it's fixed from one of those two changes. Thanks for the tips. I'm not sure if I would have figured that out.
    razorpitwatto_cobra
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