Your Internet-connected devices may be getting more cooperative, thanks to group of startups and established players who have come together to create a new nonprofit group called the Internet of Things Consortium.
The “Internet of Things,” for those of you who aren’t too familiar with it, basically refers to the growing trend of uniquely identifiable, Internet-connected electronic devices. Jason Johnson, the consortium’s chairman, said that the term was first coined to refer to industrial technologies like RFID, but we’re now seeing a wave of consumer products, too, often funded on Kickstarter.
There are 10 initial participants in the group: Active Mind Technologies (which makes Game), Basis Science, Coin, Kease, Logitech, Movl (which makes KontrolTV), Ouya, Poly-Control, SmartThings, and Ube.
Johnson said the goal is to play a “very active” role in finding new ways for Internet of Things-related products and services to work together (in part by taking advantage of new technologies like Bluetooth Low Energy and Low Power Wi-Fi) and create “a richer fabric of intelligent devices.” For that reason, one of the key criteria for new members is an open approach to integrating with other companies. Johnson said a meeting of the consortium would be “not unlike a standards body meeting,” except that the group won’t just focus on technology, but on business as well.
Here’s an email comment from Ube CEO Utz Baldwin about why this effort is important:
The successful adoption of [machine-to-machine] and connected home technologies is dependent on open standards for the provisioning and control of millions of headless devices. We are excited to be among other emerging companies that share the same vision and that are committed to moving the industry forward collectively.
Johnson may be best known to TechCrunch readers as a managing partner at the Founders Den, but his past experience includes serving as chairman of the Wireless VoIP Consortium and vice president of Dolby Laboratories’ technology standards licensing business unit. He said he’s also working on a stealth Internet of Things startup of his own.
The consortium will hold its first meeting on Wednesday at 5 pm, at CES in Vegas. If you’re interested in attending, you can email email@example.com.
Jason Johnson is a Silicon Valley technologist and entrepreneur. He is best known as the founder of InterQuest Communications, a high-speed Internet service provider which delivered service to private communities before the widespread adoption of DSL and cable modems. Most recently he was the vice president of marketing for a venture unit of Dolby Laboratories, Inc.