Zigbee Alliance Looks to Create New Wireless Standard for Commercial Markets

As part of its Project Connected Home over IP initiative, the Zigbee Alliance plans to launch a new connectivity standard targeted at the resimercial and commercial markets.

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The Zigbee Alliance has announced it is forming a team dedicated to the development and promotion of the Zigbee standard for commercial markets. This move is in alignment with the overall vision for its Project Connected Home over IP initiative, which is to develop and promote the adoption of a new, royalty-free connectivity standard.

The initiative also hopes to simplify development for manufacturers and increasing compatibility for customers and consumers. Offering value across the IoT landscape, the standard is targeting devices in categories such as lighting and electrical, HVAC controls, access control, safety and security, window coverings/shades, TVs, access points, bridges, and others.

The standard is designed to address many of the needs of the high-growth commercial buildings category, where the install base of connected devices is expected to grow from 1.7 billion in 2020 to nearly 3 billion by 2025.

“In today’s changing world, an IP infrastructure is the necessary backbone for any network to enable companies to leverage a digital architecture and connect their IoT-enabled devices,” says Manish Kumar, senior vice president of Schneider Electric. “Companies will be able to easily build and add Project-based devices to their existing networks in a way that is IT-compliant with the current architecture and management infrastructure.”

Commercial Strategy Group Helps Ensure Installer Successes

Once launched, the project also plans to address many smart home use cases that have wide applicability across the commercial landscape. According to the Zigbee Alliance, the standard is well-suited to commercial applications as it is built on market-proven solutions and best practices from major technologies to ensure secure, scalable architectures. Of particular importance, the project is based on an IP networking foundation, which enables the reuse of flexible and familiar connectivity options.

“The industry is constantly investing in new technologies to achieve interoperability and offer an augmented use case experience to customers and tenants within commercial buildings,” says Murat Eti, vice president of strategy and future technologies, Legrand. “The Project will help drive the development and growth of a large, multi-vendor device catalog that commercial solutions providers can tap into to drive value and efficiencies across both residential and commercial environments.”

To ensure commercial implementers can make the best use of the initiative, more than 50 industry leaders around the world with commercial-focused solutions – including Allegion, DSP Group, DSR Corporation, Latch, Legrand, MMB Networks, Nordic Semiconductor, NXP Semiconductors, OSRAM, Qorvo, Schneider Electric, Signify, Silicon Labs, Somfy and ubisys – have aligned to form the project’s Commercial Strategy Group.

With a charter to support development and promote the use of the standard within the commercial industry, this team will:

  • Clarify the commercial use cases that can readily be supported by the Project’s initial specification;
  • Define the new features required for additional commercial use cases;
  • Facilitate conversation and collaboration among members to strengthen use and adoption of IP-based connectivity standards in the commercial market globally; and
  • Advocate and encourage others to join and contribute to this market-leading effort.

The recently formed Commercial Strategy Group includes global commercial solutions leaders from various industries and geographies and continues to chart next steps to converge on IP-based connectivity within buildings and facilities. This is an open group; new members are welcome and encouraged to join, contribute, and represent their applications and markets in the important conversations happening now.