We've been disappointed by the fits and starts that powerline technology has suffered in the past, but an honest look over the past year's HomePlug
Alliance achievements isn't without bright spots. Growth in the install base (now at 25 million devices), products and vendors (18 new members) are nothing to sneeze at, and HomePlug AV2's
promise of 600Mbps speeds sounds promising going forward. Kicking of at CES this week and moving forward, the alliance wants to see lots more household connectivity for HDTV
, HDMI and all manner
of data transfer you want to get done without tearing down the sheetrock in your home. Could this be the year that HomePlug really takes off, or will disappointing real-world performance continue to dog the technology? Hit the link for the alliance's rosy view and let us know your predictions in the comments.
January 6, 2009 – The HomePlug® Powerline Alliance today announced it will be showcasing innovative products and technologies from multiple member companies at the 2009 Consumer Electronics Show (January 8-11, 2009) in South Hall 2, Booth #25826. Demonstrating their leadership in the powerline communications (PLC) industry, HomePlug Alliance member companies have now shipped more than 25 million PLC devices worldwide, a more than 50 percent increase from the same time last year, with cumulative product certifications now equaling more than 165 products over the last seven years. This marks the end of a very exciting and productive year for the alliance, with a number of key milestones having taken place.
The growing international support of the HomePlug Powerline Alliance is exhibited with the addition of 18 new member companies from a variety of industries to the alliance throughout the year, including Contributor member Renesas and a number of utilities including American Electric Power, Consumers Energy Co., Duke Energy, Electricite de France (EDF), Oncor Electric Delivery, Pacific Gas & Electric Company, Reliant Energy, Southern California Edison, and San Diego Gas and Electric. Other new members include Hangzhou H3C Technologies Co., Ltd., Juice Technologies, LLC, Landis+Gyr, NuVo Technologies LLC, Pioneer Corporation, PowerMax Global, LLC, ST&T Corporation, TELECOM Bretagne and Watteco.
The HomePlug Powerline Alliance's Smart Energy Initiative has been a very important new area. In August, the alliance reached an important milestone by announcing a liaison partnership with the ZigBee Alliance and major utility companies to help build the Home Area Network (HAN) Green Ecosystem for controlling load devices at peak demand such as thermostats, pool pumps, white goods and electric vehicles, and providing real time information to the consumer. This initiative is the only utility industry-led solution that will deliver ubiquitous whole-home energy management.
In November, the completion of the HomePlug AV2 Market Requirements Document (MRD) was announced. HomePlug AV2 technology targets evolving home network requirements with usable throughput speeds up to 600Mbps and more robust coverage.
And capping off a momentous year, the alliance announced on December 22 that the IEEE P1901 Working Group approved proposals including key HomePlug technology as the baseline for an IEEE standard for high speed powerline networking.
"This past year has brought about so many significant developments for the HomePlug Powerline Alliance and continued to cement our place as the leader in the powerline communications industry," said Rob Ranck, president of the HomePlug Powerline Alliance. "The HomePlug Alliance has made reliable technology a reality and it is the only high-speed technology with interoperable solutions from multiple vendors. By every real-world measure, HomePlug technology is the global leader in networking via powerlines – more shipments, more member companies, more certified products and more satisfied consumers."
This week at the 2009 International CES in Las Vegas, the HomePlug Powerline Alliance will showcase innovative products and technology demonstrations from a variety of member companies including:
- HDTV distribution featuring Intellon solutions
- Home entertainment systems from Russound incorporating solutions from Arkados
- Smart energy demonstrations featuring solutions from Yitran and Simply Automated
- HDMI over powerline demonstrated by ST&T
- Connectivity for security cameras, gaming and Internet access demonstrated by GigaFast