Google, Amazon and Apple (plus others) have created Connected Home Over IP, a new working group managed by the Zigbee Alliance, which aims to develop a new, open smart home connectivity standard based on Internet Protocol (IP). For consumers, this will mean that stuff just works together, but it'll be a boon for developers, too, as a universal standard streamlines product development and reduces costs by giving them a blueprint for their products.
The other Zigbee Alliance board member companies include IKEA, Samsung SmartThings and Signify (the new name for Philips Lighting). They're all on board to help develop the "royalty-free connectivity standard."
The group hasn't revealed any roadmaps or timelines, although major developments will be announced as and when they happen. The important thing is that three of the smart home industry's major players are now working from the same page, which will help integrate smart home tech even deeper in to everyday life.