Personally, I'm not to make bets on a technology battle when it's in its infancy. And certainly, it's too early to choose choosing a winner in the battle over the right wireless mesh networking technology for home automation.
But, you have to be intrigued with the work that Zensys has done in the space with the launch of its ZW0201 chip this week. Zensys has certainly gained some traction for its Z-Wave wireless mesh networking approach and, in turn, landed chip deals for its chips. But, to implement the chips, companies roughly incurred a $7.50 BOM cost. That's a big cost to add to a plain old light switch, isn't it?
With the ZW0201, the company is taking a big step to address the $7.50 cost issue. With this chip, the company claims that BOM costs will not float around $4. And, they aren't stopping there. According to Zensys' Raoul Wijgergangs, the company will push BOM costs into the $1.50 range by the second quarter of 2005 now that's more attractive for networking a light switch.
Now, I'm not sure whether Zensys will win, even at $1.50. The company still as to prove that its technology can scale and that other chip vendors will be willing to support it.
But, if Zensys is making the move to $1.50, it's safe to say that others will follow. And, that can only be seen as a positive step toward true adoption of wireless mesh networking technology in the price conscious home automation market.