The certification process for nVoy, the operating brand name of the IEEE P1905 intercommunication standard, has been set in motion, with National Technical Systems (NTS) in the US being chosen as the initial authorized test lab.
In March, the IEEE 1905.1 standard for interconnection between Wi-Fi, HomePlug Powerline and the MoCa coaxial cable system was ratified and published, but it has taken quite a while to get a compliance process in place for the spec, now called nVoy.
However, the test system has now been verified against several silicon platforms and NTS will validate interoperability and compliance to the specification. This is a new departure for a 50-year old technical organization which is not a final standards authority, although it does dynamic frequency selection testing services for manufacturers of all 802.11 variants.
The idea is that these three technologies will become the hybrid home LAN, with existing coax being the fast home superhighway, powerline performing that job where there is no coax, and Wi-Fi supporting final delivery, given that most devices come with an onboard Wi-Fi chip. This may come too late for major US home gateway deployments, which leaked RFPs indicate to rely almost entirely on more powerful modern Wi-Fi, although they come with in-built MoCA connections too.
The nVoy Certification program will be available to members of the three relevant associations - HomePlug Alliance, Wi-Fi Alliance and MoCA - and will require PHY/MAC certification from the appropriate alliance as a prerequisite. The first public demonstration will be held at Broad-band World Forum this month, with nVoy promising single push-button operation for security integration, automatic configuration of Wi-Fi security keys over powerlines, and network topology discovery.
This alliance makes it immediately tough for anyone in the G.hn camp to respond. The Home-Grid Forum, which combines the support groups for the HPNA and G.hn technologies, has consistently said that it will seek membership of the IEEE P1905 committee for its two standards, and that it will build its own links to the related technologies – Wi-Fi in particular - in order to make the networks easy to connect to one another.