June 2006
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Babel Buster Network Gateways: Big Features. Small Price.
Control Solutions, Inc. - Minnesota

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ZigBee versus Z-Wave

  Ken Sinclair

This article extracted from EE Times provides insight to the these two competing wireless standards.

Troyer claimed that Intel does not "see competition from ZigBee, because we've had such a big jump in the market." Bob Heile, chairman of the ZigBee Alliance, said Zensys addresses a narrow applications range. -- Nicolas Mokhoff

http://www.eetimes.com/news/design/showArticle.jhtml?articleID=187203656

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Securing Buildings News

ZigBee, Z-Wave bring meshes home

Nicolas Mokhoff
EE Times
(05/22/2006 10:00 AM EDT)

Wireless sensor network (WSN) markets are at an early stage of development and should begin to realize their true potential starting in 2007, according to ABI Research (Oyster Bay, N.Y.).

Many WSN systems-on-chip are packaged in modules that may include added circuitry, stack-networking layer software and antennas. OEMs can use these drop-in components to make their products ready for WSN without having to know a lot about RF engineering or do extensive testing.

Many devices for wireless sensor networks use IEEE 802.15.4 chips. At the networking level, the ZigBee protocol competes with Zensys' Z-Wave and SmartLabs' Insteon for residential WSN use.

ZigBee-compliant products adhere to the IEEE 802.15.4 physical radio standard and operate in unlicensed bands worldwide at 2.4 GHz (global), 915 MHz (Americas) and 868 MHz (Europe). Transmission distances range from 10 to 100 meters, depending on power output and environmental characteristics. Members of the ZigBee Alliance include some of the largest semiconductor companies in the industry: Freescale, Philips, Samsung and Texas Instruments. Ember, ZigBee's early developer, recently signed an agreement with STMicroelectronics to co-develop a complete road map of next-generation ZigBee solutions, including hardware, software and tools.

Intel has joined the rival Z-Wave Alliance home automation group and has made a strategic investment in Zensys, which developed the Z-Wave wireless mesh-networking technology upon which the alliance is founded. Intel Capital has also invested in alliance member iControl (Palo Alto, Calif.), developer of a software and services platform designed to lower cost barriers for home and business remote monitoring.

Reliable Controls Z-Wave is a 900-MHz wireless technology that is being promoted as an alternative to ZigBee for lighting and home automation. Zensys launched its ZW0201 chip for Z-Wave communications in 2005, claiming that higher performance at lower cost would make Z-Wave the de facto standard for home automation. Steve Troyer, vice president of marketing at Zensys, said the partners want to drive Z-Wave and its RF mesh and control capabilities into Intel's Viiv entertainment platform. "We will work together to develop third-party applications surrounding Z-Wave," Troyer said.

Troyer claimed that Intel does not "see competition from ZigBee, because we've had such a big jump in the market." Bob Heile, chairman of the ZigBee Alliance, said Zensys addresses a narrow applications range. -- Nicolas Mokhoff

From the http://www.z-wavealliance.org this news

Z-Wave Alliance Kicks Off CONNECTIONS™ 2006 with Significant Momentum in the Wireless Home Controls Market

(May 2, 2006) Experience the Benefits for Yourself at the Z-Wave Lounge at CONNECTIONS 2006...

Intel Makes Strategic Investment in Zensys

(Apr 25, 2006) Intel Makes a Strategic Investment in Zensys, Developer of Z-Wave...

Intel and Monster Join the Alliance

(Apr 19, 2006) Intel and Monster Join the Z-Wave Alliance as Principal Members...

 

 

 

Be sure to read our May interview.
The ZigBee Alliance - Bob Heile, Chairman ZigBee Alliance
The ZigBee Alliance is a global ecosystem of companies creating wireless solutions for use in home, commercial and industrial applications.

It appears that ZigBee will be the standard for Large building Automation but Z-wave may make inroads into the home market.

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