ECHONET Consortium formulated the new roadmap for popularization of ECHONET 2.0 and proceeded with consideration according to the ECHONET 2.0 strategic guidelines. The outline was announced at the forum in February 2023 and the symposium in March. Specific examination items are as follows. Expanding the number of ECHONET Lite enabled devices and examining methods to ensure the reliability of the entire system, examining measures to increase the number of ECHONET 2.0 service cases, developing measures and policies for the spread of ECHONET 2.0, promoting the realization of the orderly co-creation space, and consideration of the construction of a demonstration environment for promotion.
We also focused on activities aimed at realizing ECHONET 2.0, which has been ongoing since FY2019. For examples in the study of cooperation measures for standardization activities with related organizations, we formulated “CHAdeMO-ECHONET Cooperation Guidelines Ver.1.00” and released it to the public (May 16, 2022). With the JEMA VPP subcommittee, progress was made in formulating ECHONET Lite Web API specifications for Demand Response based on the requirements of the revised JEMA VPP guidelines (scheduled to be released in June) and completing a review of the managing members.
We have also promoted activities to promote domestic and international dissemination, international standardization activities, continued operation of the ECHONET Lite AIF certification system, and new development and revision activities for ECHONET Lite standards.
For example, in connection with the ECHONET Lite standard, functions such as power generation facilities with measurement functions that correspond to the specified measurement system in Japan are defined as “distributed power supply electric energy meter class”, and “ECHONET Device Object Detailed Regulations Release Q”, “ECHONET Device Object Detailed Regulations Release Q rev.1”, and “Application Communication Interface Specifications Ver.1.00 between Distributed Power Meters and HEMS Controllers” were released to the public (November 25, 2022).
In terms of promotional activities in Japan, we will continue to strengthen cooperation with JEMA, Japan Federation of Housing Organizations, and the Japan Electronics and Information Technology Industries Association (JEITA). In relation to exhibitions, we exhibited both in real and online at CEATEC2022 and ENEX2023 (jointly with Kanagawa Institute of Technology), actively promoting the consortium’s PR activities. As for overseas promotion activities, we exhibited at Enlit Europe (Germany), Enlit Asia (Bangkok), ESSEXPO (Korea), and Energy Taiwan (Taiwan) to improve recognition overseas. We also visited Taiwan to investigate trends in energy management and EV charging equipment development, and exchanged opinions with related companies and organizations for the spread of ECHONET 2.0.
In terms of international standardization activities, in cooperation with KAIT, which was entrusted with the international standard development project (national project) of the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, we promoted standardization activities for “AIF specifications between storage batteries and HEMS controllers.”
In the continuous operation activities of the ECHONET Lite AIF certification system, 52 cases of ECHONET Lite and 88 cases of ECHONET Lite AIF (43 cases of controller, 45 cases of device) were newly registered this year. As a result, the cumulative number of certifications was 937 for ECHONET Lite certification and 803 for ECHONET Lite AIF certification (433 for controller and 370 for device).
As a result of these activities, the total number of ECHONET Lite certified products shipped has reached 138.8 million units.
In order to realize a carbon-neutral and digitalized society, ECHONET Consortium this year will promote the development of next-generation smart meter related standards for ECHONET Lite devices, which have spread over 138 million units on the consumer side and aim to further increase the number. Furthermore, in order to realize cloud services using ECHONET Lite devices, a major pillar is to promote a wide range of ECHONET 2.0 related activities in cooperation with related organizations.
As ECHONET Lite continues to be used in next-generation smart meters, which are key devices for achieving carbon neutrality, we will formulate application communication interface specifications and certification test specifications which corresponding the low-voltage smart electricity meter class and the newly specified bidirectional high-voltage smart electricity meter class. Through cooperation with related organizations and members such as the Japan Electrical Manufacturers’ Association (JEMA), CHAdeMO Association, Japan Federation of Housing Organization, we will improve the domestic and overseas promotion activities, new formulation and revision of Lite standards and AIF standards and so on while listening to requests from the market and continue to study technologies for future IoT compatibility.
On the other hand, ECHONET Consortium will promote studies toward the realization of an orderly collaborative creation space in line with the new load map for popularizing ECHONET 2.0 formulated last fiscal year and the ECHONET 2.0 strategic guidelines. At that time, we will consider it through discussions from a wide range of perspectives in collaboration with related organizations such as Service Cooperation Platform Study Group which was jointly established with the Japan Electronics and Information Technology Industries Association (JEITA) in 2022, and the JEMA subcommittee in which ECHONET Consortium members are participating. For example, we will continue to work on the construction of a demonstration environment as a study of how to ensure the reliability of the entire system for the expansion of ECHONET Lite devices in cooperation with universities and JEITA. In order to examining service examples for The Vision for a Digital Garden City Nation, use cases will be set and detailed examination will be conducted for various web space services such as energy-related and smart homes. Furthermore, as ECHONET 2.0 dissemination measures and policy development, we will consider a conformity certification system to expand and operate the certification system. We will also proceed the standardization using ECHONET Lite Web API as an important component of cooperation measures in the cloud.
As a dissemination activity, these activities will be introduced at various exhibitions such as CEATEC and ENEX, and activities will be conducted to make them widely known through websites and direct mails. In particular, we will actively appeal to relevant ministries and academic experts who are promoting the design of systems for solving problems through digitalization and realizing carbon neutrality and aim to make the achievements of ECHONET Consortium contribute to solving social issues by incorporating the results into the design of related systems. In its activities, in order to spread ECHONET 2.0related services, ECHONET Workshops are held as a forum for exchanging opinions between service providers, including non-members, ECHONET Consortium members, and members of other organizations to share common challenges and seek solutions based on standards.
Through these activities, ECHONET Consortium disseminates ECHONET Lite standard and responds to requests for cooperation from the government, domestic and foreign industry groups and member companies for the expansion of the home network and IoT market. We will continue to strengthen our organization and operational structure to build a permanent operational foundation for our activities.