back to article Google-backed Thread, OCF form alliance for Internet of Things sanity

The internet of things standards mess has become a little saner, with the news that the Google-backed Thread Group will interoperate with the Open Connectivity Foundation (OCF). The two clans have said they will "work together in their mission to advance the adoption of connected home products" and make their technologies " …

  1. Gene Cash Silver badge

    "currently not used widely in the market"

    So basically the whole thing is a marketing "hey look at us!"

    They can all die in a fire.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "They can all die in a fire."

      The worlds greatest slurper takes charge of IoT? Great! Look at the crap corporate responses here below. I guess they didn't get the memo???

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    IoT is the idea you get when the surveillance market reaches 100% saturation.

    How do we harvest the diminishing returns of people's data? Hide sensors in household appliances.

    Why would people want that? They don't, and this concept will be crushed by the weight of people's indifference.

    1. Pascal Monett Silver badge

      But it will unfortunately rebound thanks to all the friggin' idiots who would die for a chance to control their lighting and heating from the slab grafted to their hand.

  3. ratfox

    It's the nice thing with standards...

    ... There's so many to choose from.

  4. channel extended

    The OCD?

    When a friend of mine said he had OCD, does that mean he is running the Open Connect Daemon?

  5. Planty Bronze badge

    Google + OCF = defacto standard. Crisis averted.

  6. frank ly

    "In order for consumers to put their faith in the connected home, their experience must be simple, reliable, and effortless."

    Just like it is with PCs nowadays.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Relatively Pointless

    The biggest problem facing IoT is electrical power.

    For things that are plugged into the mains, (e.g. power switches) this is of course not a problem.

    But for many, many things like radiator valves, door locks, security system sensors, power is a real problem.

    The degree of control you have over a radiator valve is limited by the life of batteries you can put in it. More power = more opportunities to change the valve = a better heating control system.

    I've a IoT burglar alarm, with camera sensors. It kinda works, but the camera and its flash are so shit (because it's all got to run on 2 AAs for a reasonable time) that the pictures are never going to identify a person. In fact, it would be difficult to tell whether anyone at all was in front of it, so bad is the blurring.

    Door locks with batteries? Really? It won't be moving much metal then...

    Having played around with a few things now I've concluded that these things are of limited appeal (and therefore don't work so well in the market) because they fundamentally don't work that well. They could all work much, much better if they had access to more power. Maybe power-over-Ethernet?

    Regardless of how that power is delivered, with more power available there'd be no need to turn to things like Thread, BLE, or whatever. You could simply use Ethernet, or WiFi, and also a full sized Linux capable of being updated regularly and properly, etc.

    The problem of course is that house builders don't see it as being worthwhile to run yet more cabling to every radiator, external door, corner of the ceiling, etc. It all has to be retrofitted, and who wants to do that? For better heating control I can see a case for changes in the building regulations - everyone wants to burn less gas. But for doors? Burglar alarms? It's difficult to mandate those things.

    1. Baldy50

      Re: Relatively Pointless

      TRV's (Thermostatic Radiator Valves) could be made to be a little more sensitive but work just fine in shutting the valve down when the room reaches the set temperature and need no power to do this, if in combination with a main room thermostat correctly placed, a standard domestic heating system is quite efficient and the main problem is the KW output of the radiators not collectively sufficient to the boiler output.

      I know it works for devices like mast head amplifiers as the DC power is decoupled at each end by a small capacitor and thus rejects the DC but allows the RF through, CAT5 cables are rated at around 100 MHz so It's transmission characteristics put in the high to very high frequency bandwidth.

      With regards to your CCTV system your cameras must be very old, 720/1080 pixels are the norm now and if the quality is so poor most courts would not entertain the footage, It may be useful to prove a crime had been committed at your property and not an insurance fraud but that's probably all and regardless of the trouble with cabling it is still the best option for power and signal quality.

      I do hope your DVR is in safe place so as not to be nicked along with your chattels.

      As for electric door locks they're ok in hospitals and schools where the electromagnet releases the door so it closes to prevent smoke and feeding a fire but can still be pushed open to get through.

      Some of the companies I've worked for do install AV wall plates in each room with CAT5 as well but normally in more prestige builds, so you could have a NAS system somewhere in the house accessible from every room.

      The main problem with modern builds is the floor being usually 8" by 2" T&G boards ring nailed and sometimes glued down as well, so getting them up to run cables is a nightmare compared to normal floorboards and laminate flooring too.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Relatively Pointless

        It's not CCTV, it's a PIR sensor with a built-in stills camera and flash. The idea is that when it detects movement it emails a picture of the miscreants to you. Except the flash is so dim and the camera shutter speed so slow that in anything other than perfect lighting conditions the picture is useless. And this is not old - it's a current product from a well known security products supplier. I can only imagine that a better camera and flash were not used for power consumption reasons; there's plenty of better camera and flash modules avalanche on the market, but they'll all take more power than a couple of AAs can provide over a useful period of time.

        Re cabling an existing house; here in the UK it's common for floors to be sheets of chipboard, with the internal walls built on top. It's a nightmare to get underneath them.

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