SURE Universal Announces "Universal Smart Home Solution", OCF Compatibility
SURE Universal will be showcasing a new software solution for set-top-box manufacturers at the annual IBC tech show held in Amsterdam in mid-September. Described as a "state-of-the-art software that immediately makes any existing STB into an interoperable, smart home gateway," the company seems to intend to take advantage of the potential synergy with their SURE Universal Remote app, which is already used by "more than 20 million consumers" on Android and iOS devices. To add to this, their new software, known as the SURE Gateway, will communicate with Z-Wave and Wi-Fi smart devices.
This software, aimed specifically at STB vendors and manufacturers, is intended to quell "the technological confusion… for STB makers and their operator customers to choose the right communication standard" due to use of the new Open Connectivity Foundation standard. Even though this standard is backed by "more than 400 leaders of the electronics industry," few devices today are compatible.
SURE Universal Founder and CEO Viktor Ariel explained that "the set-top-box is the logical centerpiece of the consumer's home experience" and that "all operators, MSOs and Telcos now want and expect smart home capabilities from the STB suppliers. To live up to its full service and revenue potential, the STB not only needs to be smart, but also interoperable, and backward-compatible with the consumer's existing electronics."
While the success of this software will depend on the adaptation of OCF, Ariel believes that OCF compatibility "represents a major shift in the smart home market" and that SURE software, the only control software certified for OCF so far, can bridge the gap between existing standards and the yet to be released OCF devices, so manufacturers "don't have to wait for the OCF standard to become mainstream."