ZigBee applications such as Smart Energy and Home Application will be able to run over the industry-standard Internet Protocol using a new framework proposed by Arch Rock Corp. The Compact Application Protocol (CAP) expands the scope of the ZigBee applications to any Internet Protocol-enabled device, regardless of the type of wired or wireless network to which it is connected. But it preserves the resource-efficiency and compactness critical to devices networked using IEEE 802.15.4 low-power radio.
Because the existing ZigBee stack runs only on 802.15.4, ZigBee devices can communicate only with other devices on the same local mesh network, unless users deploy a series of complex, costly, and hard-to-maintain protocol-translation gateways. CAP takes the application-oriented upper layers of the ZigBee stack and runs them efficiently over the same Internet Protocol foundation used by millions of existing networked devices.
Once built on the standard IP protocol stack, embedded devices such as utility meters, thermostats, and load-control devices can become part of the larger IP infrastructure, able to communicate over any LAN or WAN links (e.g., Ethernet, HomePlug, Wi-Fi, IEEE 802.15.4 low-power radio) with other embedded devices as well as remote computers and servers.
Arch Rock has submitted the CAP draft specification to the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) as an informational draft. A demonstration of CAP is available to Arch Rock customers and partners on request.