The ZigBee Alliance's new Internet solutions initiative will make it easier for developers and system integrators to deploy ZigBee and to add additional features and functions, including IPv6 support.
The wireless ZigBee standard already has extensive IP capabilities but a clearer path to the Internet will enable designers to include a wide range of never-before-connected devices over the Internet, which the Alliance calls "a true Internet of Things."
The initiative will seek to expand IP services even further into ZigBee networks and will augment existing ZigBee gateway programs providing standardized interfaces for ZigBee data.
The initiative is part of the Alliance's ongoing technology evaluation programs ensuring interoperability of ZigBee solutions today, while providing support for other open technologies tomorrow.
All ZigBee public application profiles feature product interoperability, regardless of manufacturer. Public profiles available today include:
- ZigBee Smart Energy enables wireless communication between utility companies and common household devices such as smart thermostats and appliances either through the meter or over the Internet. It improves energy efficiency by allowing consumers to choose interoperable products from different manufacturers giving them the means to manage their energy consumption more precisely using automation and near real-time information.
- ZigBee Home Automation offers reliable and interoperable products to be developed for the home by product manufacturers everywhere. It offers consumers unprecedented reliability, control, convenience, security and choice. ZigBee Home Automation provides standard interfaces for the control of lighting, HVAC, power outlets, motorization, security, audio/video and other devices. ZigBee HA devices are connected to other networks in many ways, including phone lines, mobile phones, set-top boxes and directly to the Internet offering remote access for information and control of devices at the home.
- ZigBee Commercial Building Automation offers reliable and interoperable products to be developed for commercial applications by companies everywhere. It offers standard interfaces for the control of lighting, HVAC, power outlets, access control, security and other devices. ZigBee CBA devices are often used to extend existing building networks and connect to these other networks via ZigBee to BACnet, ZigBee to IP or ZigBee to other types of building networks.
Bob Heile, chairman of the ZigBee Alliance said the Alliance invites companies and organizations pursuing low-power wireless networks to join its efforts.