Effective January 1, 2016, UPnP Forum assigned their assets to the Open Connectivity Foundation (OCF). UPnP Forum was originally formed in October 1999 as an industry initiative who gained more than 1000 leading companies in computing, printing and networking; consumer electronics; home appliances, automation, control and security; and mobile products.
UPnP technology allows devices to connect seamlessly and to simplify network implementation in the home and corporate environments. Toward this end, UPnP Forum members worked together to define and publish UPnP device control protocols built upon open, Internet-based communication standards.
The UPnP architecture offers pervasive peer-to-peer network connectivity of PCs of all form factors, intelligent appliances, and wireless devices. The UPnP architecture is a distributed, open networking architecture that leverages TCP/IP and the Web to enable seamless proximity networking in addition to control and data transfer among networked devices in the home, office, and everywhere in between.
UPnP technology targets home networks, proximity networks and networks in small businesses and commercial buildings. It enables data communication between any two devices under the command of any control device on the network. UPnP technology is independent of any particular operating system, programming language, or network technology.
Zero Configuration and Automatic Discovery
The UPnP architecture supports zero-configuration and automatic discovery whereby a device can:
- Dynamically join a network
- Obtain an IP address
- Announce its name
- Convey its capabilities upon request
- Learn about the presence and capabilities of other devices
- Leave a network smoothly and automatically without leaving any unwanted state information behind
DHCP and DNS servers are optional and are used only if they are available on the network.
- Media and device independence. UPnP technology can run on any network technology including Wi-Fi, coax, phone line, power line, Ethernet and 1394.
- Platform independence. Vendors can use any operating system and any programming language to build UPnP products.
- Internet-based technologies. UPnP technology is built upon IP, TCP, UDP, HTTP, and XML, among others.
- UI Control. UPnP architecture enables vendor control over device user interface and interaction using the browser.
- Programmatic control. UPnP architecture enables conventional application programmatic control.
- Common base protocols. Vendors agree on base protocol sets on a per-device basis.
- Extendable. Each UPnP product can have value-added services layered on top of the basic device architecture by the individual manufacturers.
Standardized Device Control Protocols
Like the creation of Internet standards, the UPnP initiative involves a multi-vendor collaboration for establishing standard Device Control Protocols (DCPs). Similar to Internet-based communication, these are based on protocols that are:
Expressed in XML
Communicated via HTTP
For more information on UPnP technology visit the UPnP Specifications page.
Download all of the UPnP specifications here.