Thread is a short-range wireless technology that is originally designed for home use. It has built-in security at the network layer along with mesh right out of the box. Oh, did I mention yet that its low power meaning a Thread device can easily run on a battery? Thread is an open wireless protocol that natively handles IPv6 (the next generation of Internet Protocol addressing) and, like ZigBee, is based on the 802.15.4 radio standard. (Thread does not handle the older, but more commonly used, IPv4 Internet address standard.) Thread technology is also backed by some of the largest chip manufacturers in the world like; ARM, Silicon Labs, Qualcomm, NXP, and many more.
Thread was designed with one goal in mind: To create the very best way to connect and control products in the home.
Where does Thread fit in?
Thread targets a wide variety of products for the home including appliances, climate control, lighting, safety, security and access control. These products can be mains or battery powered.
Where has Thread been and why is not more popular?
Thread launched around July 2014, and available the following year in 2015 so it is a fairly new technology only 4 years old versus something like Bluetooth, whom everyone at this point has heard of. Thread is coming about because Google’s Nest Labs, Samsung Electronics, ARM and others wanted a smart-home networking protocol that could support the Internet of Things for years to come. Many manufacturers are resistant to use a new technology that is based on Google/Nest (intellectual property). Thus the lack of popularity right now.
Design for IoT
Existing wireless networking approaches were introduced long before the Internet of Things gained ground. Thread takes existing technologies and uses the best parts of each to provide a better way to connect products in the home. 1
Basically, Thread was designed and built just for IoT and it’s new communication style. This is huge for newcomers to IoT because instead of using a technology that was not initially built with IoT in mind, they now have the option to start focusing on the correct wireless protocol by using Thread. This stands to offer the newcomer a huge advantage by not being held back by old technology.
What about the Consumer?
When looking at getting into the Consumer market in IoT and building a product to use an existing network like WiFI or Bluetooth it’s important that its easy for the COnsumer to connect the device and be on their way. If not, that device will be back on your shelf very quickly.
Consumers can simply and securely add and remove products to the network via a smartphone, tablet or computer.
Thread’s robust wireless network provides improved security and reliability while its battery-friendly design allows for extremely low power consumption giving you additional options for creating a new device or connecting to an existing one.
All Thread-certified products are rigorously tested to ensure that they work together effortlessly and securely right out of the box. 1
All Thread partners are certified and products are tested to meet the network specifications and rules.
1 Introducing Thread: A New Wireless Networking Protocol For The Home
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