Qualcomm has gained Monster and Fon as new hardware partners for its AllPlay media-streaming platform, another step in the chipmaker's plans to become a central player in connecting devices for the growing Internet of Things.
AllPlay, first announced in September 2013, helps people wirelessly stream music from mobile apps to multiple speakers in their homes. The system allows users to play different music in every room of the home from a single device or play a song in sync in multiple rooms. AllPlay is already used by Spotify, iHeartRadio, Napster, and Rhapsody's music services.
Adding to that list, Qualcomm said Wednesday that Monster, a maker of video cables and headphones, will integrate AllPlay into its SoundStage wireless speakers, and Wi-Fi network company Fon will provide AllPlay in its Gramofon streaming-music box, which is expected to start shipping later this year.
AllPlay is built atop AllJoyn, the chipmaker's open software framework for connecting nearby devices. With AllJoyn, Qualcomm has sought to create a common language for objects now connected to the Internet and each other -- such as lighting, appliances and thermostats -- to allow them to more easily speak to each other. Several major tech players -- including Intel, Samsung and Google -- are pursuing similar platforms to try to guide the future on the so-called Internet of Things, in which everyday objects and devices are connected.
Qualcomm also said Wednesday that AllPlay is now certified with Spotify Connect, that company's service for streaming music via Wi-Fi from mobile devices to stereo speakers or televisions nearby. With certification, Spotify Connect users will be able to stream media to several speakers in the home, instead of just one set, when using AllPlay-compatible devices.
Qualcomm also said the AllPlay Click software development kit is now publicly available, which should help bring the platform to more music service and media player apps. The developer tools were previously available only to certain Qualcomm partners as part of a testing phase.
Separately, Qualcomm's Atheros unit, which focuses on Wi-Fi chips, reached two new distribution deals to support developers, working with Arrow Electronics in North America and China, and Codico in Europe. Along with some new developer tools, the distribution agreements could help Qualcomm expand the use of low-power Wi-Fi in more products, especially in the connected home -- a major area of focus for the company.