Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Where We Can Find Zigbee Technology?

When we are talking about Internet of Things (IoT), Wireless Sensor Network (WSN) is most likely also to be considered since it is part of IoT. The day that sensor devices will surround us has nearly come. For example, our smartphones, which are brought anywhere and anytime, has been injected several kind of sensors. Furthermore, there is report mentioning that wireless sensor devices have reached 1.2 billion dollars in 2013 and are expected to increase 4.3 billion dolars in 2019 in global market. If we talk about the number of devices, ABI research reported more than half billion wireless smart home monitoring device will be deployed around the world. What a huge number!

Picture taken from Texas Instrument
Home automation is one of the most applied system of Zigbee technology. This is one of major Zigbee development areas along with connected lighting, utility industries, and retail services. For the top layer, user-defined application layer, Zigbee alliance has made standard of home automation system. In its standard, it covers remote access, security, switches, house closures, door lock, appliances control, and lighting. Extensively, Zigbee can also be implemented for building automation. It mainly aims to monitor and control commercial building systems such as implementing energy saving or striving low cost-lifecycle-based commercial building.

Zigbee can also be introduced in health care area. Its products are mainly focus on monitoring and management of non-critical low-acuity healthcare services targeted at chronic disease, aging independence and general health, wellness and fitness. In cooperation with health care and technology companies and Continua Health Alliance, Zigbee Alliance tries to create a global standard Zigbee health care.

In retail services, Zigbee technology enables retailers to monitor, track, and manage their stuff as well as customer behaviour in order to improve their services and working efficiency. On the other hand, implementation of Zigbee in retail area will enhance shopping experience and give more control of their shopping experience. Smart Energy is also one of sectors that is considered by Zigbee Alliance. There is already application standard of products that can monitor, control, inform, and automate the delivery and use of energy and water. Using Zigbee, it is also possible to be deployed in consumer electronics and computer accessories, smart light link, and remote control.

Deployment of Zigbee technology has involved significant number of companies in several places all over the world. In 2011, Market Dynamics Research reported more than 350 companies offered or had been developing Zigbee-based products. Last year, over 1000 certified products has been released by those companies. NXP, Philips, Schneider Electrics, Silicon Labs, Texas Instrument, etc are big companies which have big portion of influential level since they are categorized as promoter companies. Some others which actively evolve and receive early access to standards and specification are called participants. They more than a hundred companies including: CISCO, GE, Green Peak, Atmel, Bosch, etc. Hundreds more are only adopter companies that is allowed to use standard and specification from Zigbee.

Internet of Things is not settle yet as well as Zigbee technology. There are still few places deploying Zigbee in some country worldwide. Most reports say that it is highly deployed in USA. With 11 partner companies, it has been deployed more than 40 million Zigbee meter to monitor energy usage in house residents. Based on reports in 2013, there are trials in Italy and Netherlands for deploying Zigbee Home Automation. Recently, there is also already commercial ads selling Zigbee Home Automation. Meaning, this technology has started to be deployed worldwide.

In summary, current situation of Zigbee deployment starting to increase as the increase trend of IoT. A lot of companies are willing to join forces in development of Zigbee. Some application are already mature to be deployed in every places.


References:

Heile, Bob. "ZigBee Overview Wireless Sensor Networking". 2011
https://www.abiresearch.com/press/zigbees-2012-market-share-lead-in-home-automation-/
http://www.fiercemobileit.com/press-releases/installed-base-802154-enabled-devices-exceed-2-billion-2019-zigbee-face-inc
http://www.zigbee.org/