HomePlug(R) Powerline Alliance, Inc. last week announced that Duke Power, EchoStar Technologies Corporation, and Leviton Manufacturing Company, Inc. have joined the alliance, offering further endorsement of the alliance's industry-wide leadership in creating worldwide specifications for powerline networking products and services. Support for the alliance is gaining momentum as the specification for HomePlug AV moves toward completion and the specification development process for HomePlug Broadband over Powerline (BPL) continues forward.

"Building on the successful global deployment of HomePlug 1.0 products, the market for HomePlug technology is continuing to expand beyond the home PC network and into video, audio, online gaming and even broadband service to the home," said Oleg Logvinov, president of the HomePlug Powerline Alliance and president and CEO of Arkados, Inc., a subsidiary of CDKNet.com. "Duke Power, EchoStar and Leviton join over 50 other companies already working together to create and promote HomePlug powerline networking specifications around the world."

As the HomePlug BPL specification effort gains traction, the HomePlug alliance has created a new level of membership called a Utility Class Member. This membership class creates an effective forum for power utilities to share ideas regarding BPL, and formalizes the participation of utility companies in the powerline standards development process.

"Joining the HomePlug Powerline Alliance is an exciting opportunity for Duke Power to work with other leading companies to develop powerline communications for broadband access services," said Bob Gerardi, Powerline Communications program manager at Duke Power. "We believe it is critically important for the facilities- based provider to be represented in the BPL standards development process, specifically as it relates to compatibility and coexistence of access BPL and in-home powerline systems."

Representatives from all parts of the digital home value chain have joined the HomePlug Powerline Alliance to work together and continue to lead the development of powerline communications products. The alliance, through its certification process and harmonized approach to specification development, works to ensure that consumer products of all types work together to create a seamless connected environment for end users.