Telefónica will build a hub to extend the functionality of its Thinking Things sensor platform

Telefónica is planning to develop a hub for its Thinking Things smart home platform, which was unveiled last week.

Thinking Things is a modular, Arduino-compatible system comprising core connectivity and battery modules, onto which the user can plug various kinds of sensors. The first pack to be released is for measuring ambient temperature, humidity and light, then viewing the results and setting automation rules on a linked website.

Telefónica is pitching this as ideal for controlling home lighting and heating, but the kit will only be useful for controlling devices that plug into the wall, rather than hardwired lights and heaters.

The platform will however expand, a spokesman told me by email:

Right now, you can only control things that are ‘plugged’ to the core module+battery. One thing that is part of our intended roadmap (and we’ll do in due time) is to develop a hub that will be provide connectivity to devices (such as fixed heating or lighting) through short range technologies such as Zigbee or Bluetooth.

It’s worth noting that this hub will at least initially be a separate effort from the Spanish carrier group’s trial of AT&T’s Digital Life platform for home security and automation.

“Currently Thinking Things and the forthcoming trial of AT&T’s Digital Home are separate and independent of each other,” the spokesman wrote. “But our aspiration for Thinking Things is to build an open ecosystem so in time we would be keen to explore opportunities to make them interoperable.”