What is ZigBee?

ZigBee is the wireless language that everyday devices use to connect to one another. ZigBee devices can transmit data over long distances by passing data through a mesh network of intermediate devices to reach more distant ones. ZigBee is typically used in low data rate applications that require long battery life and secure networking. ZigBee has a defined rate of 250 kbit/s, best suited for intermittent data transmissions from a sensor or input device.

ZigBee is the only standards-based wireless technology designed to address the unique needs of device-to-device communication in just about any market.

‘ZigBee’ means two things:

  • A global alliance of companies founded in 2002
  • A specification for interoperable, low-cost wireless device communication

ZigBee Technology

ZigBee as supplied by Telegesis is a mesh networking technology.

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Benefits of ZigBee

  • Reliable and robust and uses multi-hop mesh networking to eliminate single points of failure and expand the reach of networks.
  • Low-power allowing battery-operated devices such as door and widow sensors to operate for seven years. With the Green Power feature, you don’t need any batteries!
  • Secure and uses a variety of security mechanisms such as AES-128 encryption, device and network keys and frame counters.
  • Global and is built on 2.4 GHz which is available for unlicensed use anywhere around the world. This means a product developer can sell the same product anywhere on the planet.
  • Interoperable and standardizes network and application layers. Everything from joining a network to device operations like on and off are defined so devices from different vendors can work together seamlessly.

ZigBee is widely used in a variety of markets including:

  • Smart Homes: ZigBee affordably connects the widest range of devices to improve comfort, security and convenience for consumers. It is the technology of choice for world-leading service providers, installers and retailers who deliver home automation, security and energy management applications to the home.
  • Connected Lighting: ZigBee is used in residential and commercial lighting applications and allows users to gain control over LEDs, light bulbs, fixtures, remote controls and switches. Users can change lighting remotely to reflect ambiance, task or season, all while managing energy use and making their homes greener.
  • Utility Industry: ZigBee Smart Energy is the world’s leading standard for interoperable products that monitor, control, inform, and automate the delivery and use of energy and water. It is deployed in tens of millions of smart meters around the world helps create greener homes by giving consumers the information and automation needed to easily reduce their consumption and save money. If you’re interested in Metering applications please see our special section on ZigBee smart Energy. This technology offers Energy companies an easy route to create home wireless networks that can communicate and control other smart appliances in the home such as thermostats.

Please take a look at the Markets section for further information.

Case studies

Our Case study section gives detailed applications from real customers on how they have implemented ZigBee in their products.

For additional information about ZigBee technology in general: www.zigbee.org