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Bosch, ABB and Cisco see the home as an integral part of the internet of things (Photo: Bosch

ABB, Robert Bosch and Cisco are forming a joint venture to develop and operate a smart-home software platform. The three companies expect the Germany-based joint venture to start operations in early 2015.

Bosch said in a press release that the new company will build a platform that will make communication between smart-home appliances and other devices easier. "The aim of the joint venture is to develop and operate an open software platform that will enable this simple exchange of data between different manufacturers’ devices," Bosch said.

The planned platform will also make possible the provision of services related to household devices. These could include energy management, security technology and entertainment.

The three companies intend to invite appliance makers, home automation vendors and service providers to participate in the platform.

ABB is one of the world's biggest engineering groups, Bosch is a top-three global automotive supplier and Cisco is a US-based networking expert.