the dotdot story
dotdot is the universal language of the Internet of Things, making it possible for smart objects to work together on any network.
At CES 2017, the zigbee alliance unveiled the program to extend its interoperability technology beyond zigbee. Meet dotdot — the universal language for the Internet of Things, making it possible for smart objects to work together on any network. dotdot enables the open, mature, and widely supported IoT language at the heart of zigbee, to work across many networking technologies, unlocking new markets for members, and unifying the fragmented IoT.
Making smart homes and businesses work for everyone.
Most IoT devices don’t speak the same language (or in technical terms, don’t use the same “application layer”) even if they use the same wireless technology. The result is an Internet of Things that is often a patchwork of translations done in the cloud, adding complexity and reducing reliability for users. Worse, the challenge and resource investment required by platform and app developers to maintain a growing set of unique interfaces to each vendor’s products, limits the scale and innovation potential of the IoT.
The solution lies in a common language between all IoT devices on any network. Because when everything speaks the same language, developers have a common platform to innovate on, and users get more freedom to choose products that work for them. Today, zigbee devices speak a common language. With dotdot, this language — the application layer at the heart of zigbee — can now be used across other IoT networks. And because it’s an open technology supported by the zigbee alliance’s 400+ strong global membership, dotdot is already ahead of the game. It offers developers more flexibility and speed in getting to market than other IoT languages still being drafted, and gives users more freedom than single-vendor ecosystems that lock them in.
Built on the maturity and momentum of zigbee.
“dotdot represents the next chapter in the zigbee alliance’s continued commitment to create and evolve open standards for the smart networks in our homes, businesses and neighborhoods,” said Tobin Richardson, zigbee alliance President and CEO. “Recognizing the value of the evolving application layer that has been the core language of zigbee devices for over a decade, market leaders within the alliance have come together to transform it into a universal language for the IoT.”
Founded in 2002, zigbee alliance members drove the development of zigbee’s low-power wireless mesh networking technology. But connectivity alone wasn’t enough to enable an interoperable ecosystem, prompting the alliance to develop and release the first open language for the IoT in 2007. This language continues to mature and grow, supporting hundreds of diverse device types, and powering more than 100 million smart devices already in homes and businesses.
Through strong industry liaisons already in place and more to come, the zigbee alliance is collaborating with other standards groups to bring dotdot to multiple IP networks and connectivity technologies. Since announcing a liaison between the zigbee alliance and Thread Group (a natural fit as both zigbee and Thread use the same underlying IEEE 802.15.4 radio technology and share a large number of members), there has already been substantial progress towards this first implementation of dotdot beyond zigbee networks. Companies including MMB Networks, OSRAM, Nortek, NXP, P&G, Resolution Products, Schneider Electric, Silicon Labs, Somfy, and ZEN Thermostat will be among companies showcasing early demonstrations of dotdot products in both the zigbee alliance and Thread booths at CES 2017. And the first dotdot certified products are expected as soon as late 2017.
“Silicon Labs and our customers have succeeded in the IoT because of the scalability of zigbee’s interoperability technology. As customers look to grow into new markets, there has been a strong demand to use the zigbee application layer on other networks," said Skip Ashton, VP Software at Silicon Labs, a leading provider of zigbee, Thread, and other connectivity technologies. "And in fact, since the zigbee alliance’s announcement of its intention to do so, we’ve seen a significant increase in adoption of zigbee because developers now know that their investment in the large zigbee market today will expand into new markets with dotdot. We’re excited to be participating in its development, and to support customers looking to build with zigbee and dotdot.”
Look for the :||
The zigbee alliance worked with the San Francisco office of Wolff Olins to develop the dotdot brand and mark, as a part of the alliance's identity refresh. The result is a brand that works for both business and consumers, and even breaks technological ground itself. It may be the first logo that can be easily drawn in CSS code, and texted as an emoji :||. The universal accessibility of the mark is fitting for a technology that frees users of locked-in ecosystems, and makes the IoT work for everyone.
The zigbee alliance will be announcing more details about dotdot, including specifications, certification and logo program, as 2017 progresses. Because dotdot is built on zigbee’s application layer and zigbee is a part of the dotdot family, the best way to get started — and get to market today — is to start building zigbee products. Companies and developers interested in getting early access or participating in dotdot’s development, can join the zigbee alliance by visiting www.zigbee.org.