Zigbee Alliance and Thread Group Bring Dotdot Specification to Thread IP Network

The Zigbee Alliance and Thread Group reported the availability of the Dotdot specification over Thread’s IP network.
The Zigbee Alliance is a foundation devoted to the establishment of wireless open standards for Internet of Things devices and networks. The alliance offers certification programs and a suite of open IoT solutions.

The Thread Group promotes the Thread open wireless mesh network control protocol for IoT networks and device communication.

The Zigbee Alliance says that the availability of the Dotdot specification over Thread’s IP network, is the first time developers can confidently utilize an established, open, and interoperable IoT language over a low-power wireless IP network. Furthermore, the alliance says that this availability will help unify the fragmented industry of connected devices and open new markets.

Luxeon High Power

“We’re at an exciting point in the Smart Home where the broader consumer market is embracing mainstream connected products; 26% of consumers own a smart home device according to our new research,” said Tom Kerber, director of IoT Strategy at Parks Associates. “To be competitive in a market where consumers will rely on these devices for years to come, companies must take a long-term view, aligning with technologies that will enable innovation and interoperability, and continue to deliver on the promise of the IoT for every stakeholder.”

Dotdot Serves as Zigbee Alliance’s Universal Language for the IoT

The alliance says that the Dotdot language makes it possible for smart objects on any network to work together. Thread is the Thread Group’s open, IPv6-based, mesh networking technology which is said to be low-power, secure and future-proof. The Thread Group and the Zigbee Alliance have come together to provide a scalable and mature solution for IoT interoperability that isn’t confined to single-vendor technologies or ecosystems.

Delivering on the Promise of the IoT

The Zigbee Alliance compares the state of today’s Internet of Things with that of the early Internet. The alliance says that the early internet faced some of the same challenges as today’s IoT. Currently, connected devices can struggle to provide a seamless experience because they speak different languages (use different “application layers” where one application language has to be translated into another). For the early Internet, the industry solved this problem by creating open, universal protocols over IP.

The Zigbee Alliance contends that Dotdot’s common device language over Thread’s IP network extends this same kind of open standards approach to the Internet of Things. The alliance also says that with Dotdot over Thread, product and platform vendors can ensure the high-quality, interoperable user experiences required to stimulate growth, while Thread’s IP network allows vendors to sustain a direct connection to their device and their customers.

Dotdot Over Thread Not Another New Standard

The Zigbee Alliance notes that Dotdot over Thread is not another new standard. In fact, according to the alliance, the Dotdot language enables the open and already widely adopted application layer at the core of Zigbee to work across Thread’s IP network.

The Thread Group and the Zigbee Alliance assert that industry-leading companies back Dotdot and Thread to serve the IoT and connected device industries. Moreover, the Thread Group and the Zigbee Alliance say that Dotdot and Thread are two of the most robust, well-supported, and widely deployed connectivity and interoperability technologies.

“Zigbee and Dotdot are the product of 15 years of innovation by our members, and the experience that comes from over a decade of building successful products,” said Tobin Richardson, Zigbee Alliance president and CEO. “This maturity is why major technology leaders have chosen Zigbee, and Dotdot over Thread now brings that value to new markets. This marks the first of many partnerships to come as we extend our application layer across additional networks to accelerate time to market and unify the IoT for all stakeholders.”

“The Thread Group’s vision is to extend IP – the powerful foundation of the internet – to low-power IoT devices,” said Grant Erickson, president of the Thread Group. “Just like the internet, this vision also requires the industry to put forth open, common protocols so devices from any vendor can work together. Dotdot gives Thread adopters an important option for that open, end-to-end connectivity and interoperability.”

Start Working with Dotdot over Thread

Zigbee Alliance members can download the Dotdot specification today. Additional resources, such as the Dotdot Commissioning Application, are scheduled to be released in Summer 2018. Also in Summer 2018, the Zigbee Alliance intends to open the Dotdot Certification program. The Thread Group launched the Thread 1.1 specification and opened its certification program back in February 2017.

Now, the Zigbee Alliance and Thread Group share some common authorized test service providers and are working with these test service providers to ensure an efficient, seamless certification process for adopters of Dotdot over Thread.

To find out more about Dotdot over Thread, register for a free webinar, co-hosted by the Thread Group and Zigbee Alliance, on December 14, 2017.