ZigBee Alliance unifies application standards for Internet of Things

November 25, 2014 // By Paul Buckley
The ZigBee Alliance is unifying the organization's market-leading wireless standards across the Internet of Things to create a single standard named ZigBee 3.0.

The standard will provide interoperability among the widest range of smart devices and give consumers and businesses access to innovative products and services that will work together seamlessly.

The new standard unifies ZigBee standards found in tens of millions of devices delivering benefits to consumers today. The ZigBee 3.0 standard enables communication and interoperability among devices for home automation, connected lighting, energy efficiency and other markets so more diverse, fully interoperable solutions can be delivered by product developers and service providers. All device types, commands, and functionality defined in current ZigBee PRO-based standards are available to developers in the new standard.

“Happy consumers are the core driving force of all Philips hue activities. Consumers expect their smart devices to just work and be simple, and we continue to deliver new and rich lighting centric experiences that are easy to control and create,” said Filip Jan Depauw, Head of Marketing & Partnerships at Philips Connected Lighting. “The ZigBee protocols are a key enabler to achieve this, and the broader ZigBee 3.0 standard further enables seamless communication across different domains and will therefore allow us to offer even greater functionality to our users. Interoperability made simple empowers new use cases and happy consumers.”

ZigBee 3.0 defines the widest range of device types including home automation, lighting, energy management, smart appliance, security, sensors, and health care monitoring products. It supports both easy-to-use DIY installations as well as professionally installed systems. Based on IEEE 802.15.4, which operates at 2.4 GHz (a frequency available for use around the world), ZigBee 3.0 uses ZigBee PRO networking to enable reliable communication in the smallest, lowest-power devices. Current ZigBee Certified products based on ZigBee Home Automation and ZigBee Light Link are interoperable with ZigBee 3.0.

ZigBee 3.0 is currently undergoing testing. Many Alliance members, including The Kroger Co., Legrand, NXP, Philips, Schneider Electric, Silicon Labs, Texas Instruments, Wincor Nixdorf and V-Mark have been actively involved in the development