Microsoft testing home-automation with HomeOS

Sometimes companies like to give us a nice little peek behind the curtain to show us what they're working on, and this time it's Microsoft's turn. The company has published a white paper on its Research site detailing its method of home automation using HomeOS. Devices like smartphones, laptops, lights, and air conditioners would be treated as individual peripherals connected to a centralized gateway.

Microsoft has been testing HomeOS in twelve homes over the past couple of months, with 42 students having written support for additional devices for the platform. Naturally there are apps available too, which can be downloaded on a desktop PC via an app store called HomeStore.

The HomeOS project is built using C# and .NET 4.0, but there's no mention if Windows is used as a base at all. Microsoft say that the HomeOS kernel is "agnostic to the devices which it provides access, allowing easy incorporation of new devices," with the software running on a centralized gateway PC dedicated purely to home automation.

As for when you can expect to see HomeOS come to the market? It's not clear, and there's no guarantee it will ever see a commercial rollout. Having said that, Microsoft has been working on the technology since 2010, and it's something the company has been talking about for many years, so we imagine it's not a project that it'll dismiss so easily.

[via Electronista]