Looking to define interoperability standards for the billions of devices expected to arrive with internet connectivity in the next few years, six companies have decided to form the Open Interconnect Consortium (OIC) — the founding members of which are Broadcom, Dell, Intel, Samsung, Atmel, and Intel-subsidiary Wind River.
With plans to eventually have its solution used in "multiple vertical markets", the OIC intends to initially tackle usage in the smart home and office.
"The Open Interconnect Consortium (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," it said in a statement.
"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."
It is expected that members will contribute software and engineering resources to develop protocol specifications and an open source reference implementation, and eventually a certification program.
Despite acknowledging the existence of the now competing AllSeen Alliance, the consortium said that it formed to "addresses all the necessary requirements" that other open source IoT standard groups had neglected.
"The companies involved in OIC believe that secure and reliable device discovery and connectivity is a foundational capability to enable IoT," the OIC said. "The companies also believe that a common, interoperable approach is essential, and that both a standard and open source implementation are the best route to enable scale."
The Qualcomm-led AllSeen Alliance is based on the Qualcomm developed AllJoyn project, and counts Microsoft, Panasonic, LG, Sharp, Cisco, Fon, and HTC among its members.
Doug Fisher, Intel corporate vice president and general manager of software and services, said that the success of the Internet of Things relied on systems being able to securely share information.
"This requires common frameworks, based on truly open, industry standards," he said. "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."