Bringing 6 application areas into the Zigbee 3.0 Pro standard is a nice way to ensure that the devices will be useful across domains - and expand their market. Seven year battery life will also be a great boon ... the only problem is that in an ever more complex Internet of Things it may become very difficult to identify the source of a system failure when the battery finally fails. We're all familiar with the chirp of the failing smoke detector (which can be hard to localize among multple devices in a building with sound reflecting walls). In 7 years, when the swarm of Internet of Things devices are all interconnected and interdependent, how will we ever determine which one has failed? A standard in which devices report their identity and location when they experience a failing battery would be a great benefit.
What's missing from the ZigBee developer ecosystem is a open source reference implemenation that's not tied to any particular vendors hardware. Unless things have changed, the ZigBee Alliance was not particularly open to this (requiring developers to stump up $$$$ in membership fees). Has there ever been a successful network standard that did not have multiple open source implementations? I don't think so.
What are the engineering and design challenges in creating successful IoT devices? These devices are usually small, resource-constrained electronics designed to sense, collect, send, and/or interpret data. Some of the devices need to be smart enough to act upon data in real time, 24/7. Specifically the guests will discuss sensors, security, and lessons from IoT deployments.