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prpl Foundation Creates Carrier Interest Group


July 19, 2016

The prpl Foundation was created to support the development of open source software and virtualized data center architectures to make it easy and efficient for businesses to develop and deploy software while also making it easy for consumers to get the tools they need for their personal and professional lives.

The latest step prpl has taken is by creating its first Carrier Interest Group (CIG). This CIG means to involve telecommunications companies with the wider community of enterprises and consumers who already support prpl’s efforts. It will also address government agencies that control the types of communications countries allow and would have the power to halt the use of open-source software in their regions of operation.

Two individuals will represent the CIG from this point forward. Co-chairs Wojtek Makowski, the chief technology officer at digital home software development company SoftAtHome, and Pasquale Bombino, the vice president of engineering at ADB, will see that the new group addresses governments, businesses, and consumers in a straightforward manner.

Bombino noted that this group could have the power to influence the nature in which products and services are released to end users, even speeding up the process of creation as a matter of course.

“This is a great opportunity to blur two worlds (open source and commercial entities) that are much closer than they are perceived; through prpl we have the concrete possibility to speed-up carrier-grade products leveraging the power of the distributed and cooperative approach typical of open source communities,” Bombino said.

It appears that prpl will continue to set its sights on connected home products as it pushes forward with its core goals and begins to address outside entities as the CIG. Makowski’s experience sets the stage for this focus. The foundation, it noted in this most recent announcement, will continue the work of the Home Gateway Initiative and support the development of the OpenWRT Linux distribution, made specifically for embedded devices.

                   Image via Pixabay

Home Gateway Initiative has disbanded after fulfilling its own mission of creating specifications for connected home devices. This does not, however, mean that the connected home is a complete project. It has its own ongoing challenges such as security and interoperability – issues that can affect consumers’ daily lives and may even not show symptoms of error until something big goes wrong. Consumers want their homes to remain secure and their smartphones and computers to work well with their thermostats and camera systems, among many other devices users can control remotely.

prpl look to address those concerns while also giving commercial businesses the incentive to keep their products open source. The mix of regulation will have to work with the will of end users and agencies such as prpl. Furthermore, groups such as the Federal Communications Commission and similar outfits in other countries will need to work for their citizens in ways that prpl cannot. The first meeting of the CIG (June 2016) reportedly went well and included a deserved back-and-forth between prpl members and businesses. The immediate reaction to the event suggests a positive future for the new group.




Edited by Maurice Nagle

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