Samsung, ARM, Nest and others jointly announce Thread wireless networking protocol
With a view to expand the Internet of Things (IoT), Samsung, ARM, Nest and other technology firms have jointly announced Thread. Thread, contrary to its name, is an IP-based wireless networking protocol which will make it easier to connect several devices at a home location.
Thread Group is formed by seven multinational companies which include Yale Security, Silicon Labs, Freescale Semiconductor and Big Ass Fans alongside Samsung, ARM and Nest. The aim of this group is to enable product developers and consumers to easily and securely connect with more than 250 devices into a low-power, wireless mesh network that also includes direct Internet and cloud access for every device.
In a press statement, Vint Cerf, vice president and chief Internet evangelist, Google, and advisor to the Thread Group, said:
“Existing wireless networking approaches were introduced long before the Internet of Things gained ground. The Thread protocol takes existing technologies and combines the best parts of each to provide a better way to connect products in the home.”
Though 802.15.4 networking technology is available for connected devices, the group considers the requirement of an upgrade in the existing technology due to its inefficiency in interoperability, inability to carry IPv6 communications, high power requirements that drain batteries quickly and “hub and spoke” models dependent on one device on the existing protocol.
Thread is not an application protocol or a connectivity platform for many types of disparate networks, it is just an IPv6 networking protocol that built on open standards and is designed for low-power 802.15.4 mesh networks.
Product developers and consumers will be able to use Thread across their millions of existing 802.15.4 wireless devices, using a software enhancement. As the protocol is designed to be operational across battery-operated smartphones and tablets, it would expand the concept of connected home.