Cisco has been named a founding member and director of yet another Internet of Things standards group to help promote and encourage use of networked machines. See also: 12 best uses of IoT in the enterprise.
The Wireless IoT Forum, formed in March, is the fifth IoT standards body formed in the last 18 months and the second co-founded by Cisco in that timeframe. In March 2014, Cisco helped found the Industrial Internet Consortium with GE, IBM and Intel, and three others have emerged: the Linux Foundation's AllSeen Alliance in 2013; Thread, started by Samsung and Google for wireless mesh IoT; and the Open Interconnect Consortium launched by Intel, Samsung and Broadcom a year ago.
The Wireless IoT Forum said it is working on accelerating the adoption of wireless wide-area networking technologies dedicated to IoT. Other founding and board members include Accenture, Arkessa, BT Telensa and WSN.
The forum said its mandate is also to remove fragmentation and drive consolidation around a minimal set of standards for both license and license-exempt wireless, and to develop a set of requirements for end users and development partners. With five IoT consortia, this may prove to be the forum's most daunting endeavor.
"The IoT market is gathering significant momentum around the globe, with new technologies and use cases being announced daily," said William Webb, CEO, Wireless IoT Forum, in a statement. "However the risk presented by fragmentation remains very real. Without widely-agreed open standards we risk seeing pockets of proprietary technology developing independently, preventing the benefits of mass-market scale. We are delighted today to be announcing our inaugural membership and to begin work to drive towards a collective view on the right way to deliver widespread IoT services."
"The IoT is growing at an unrelenting pace, but it's important that the entire ecosystem co-operates around open standards in order for it to reach its full potential," said Aidan Quilligan, managing director, Accenture Digital Mobility, in the same statement. "That's why it's important that the Forum works with key ecosystem members from the start, in order to create the right conditions for the mass market, without duplicating the work being done by existing standards bodies. Open standards represent the only way to begin the process of overcoming fragmentation in the IoT, and as part of the Forum, we will help drive this forward."
The forum's first working session was held in June. It is recruiting new members here.