Mozilla, the Firefox maker, announced an open framework of software and services, using which anyone can create an open gateway to control IoT devices.
Internet of Things (IoT) has been rapidly gaining ground for last few years, but every vendor who develops IoT devices, keep the control in his hand. These IoT devices work only with their own brand. For example, the connected thermostat works only with Amazon Echo, connected lightbulbs work only with Siri, etc.
The user needs to have an individual gateway to control each connected device, which makes costs of IoT devices and their implementation high, thus, slowing down their adoption and the market growth.
Mozilla’s open standard framework, called ‘Project Things’, decentralizes the use of IoT devices, and gives complete control of these devices to the users. The Firefox maker is committed to open standards and framework, and in order to make the future of connected devices more like open web, is making sure that the users don’t end up with the IoT which is controlled by tech companies.
Project Things consists of three key components─ Things Gateway, Things Cloud, and Things Framework. The Things Gateway can be created by anyone using popular devices like Raspberry Pi3, ZigBee, or Z-Wave USB dongles. It will guide the users about setup process and provide a secure URL. This URL will be used to access and control all the connected devices from anywhere.
Additionally, the users can issue voice commands to control the devices, and safely authorize third-party apps. The Things Gateway will feature a rules engine for setting ‘if this, then that’ logic, and additional device type support like smart plugs, multi-level switches and sensors, dimmable and colored lights etc.
“In addition to web-based commands and controls, a new experimental feature shows off the power and ease of using voice-based commands. We believe this is the most natural way for users to interact with their smart home,” wrote Mozilla in a blog post.
Previously, Project Things was only accessible to those with good technical knowledge, but this release will enable even those without much technical knowledge to build their own Things Gateway for controlling their devices.
Images source: Mozilla