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ZigBee – How Many Divisions? 07/28/06

Posted by Gilles in Opinions.
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Some argue that ZigBee is an overkill for home control and lacks market acceptance. Whether the first statement is true or not can be widely discussed (I will put something on this topic here hopefully soon). Regarding the second statement, it’s quite fair to recognize that there are not that many products around yet… I mean real ZigBee products (not pre-ZigBee, ZigBee-ready, IEEE 802.15.4-only or EmberNet and thelike). Well, that’s what I used to think. Until recently.

Following some market investigation I had to run in the past weeks I found out that there were many more products than I initially expected. And many of them in Europe (although the ZigBee Alliance is still dominated by US players). One example: a French manufacturer of electric heating systems, Kalirel, is selling in DYI stores a new line of heaters with embedded ZigBee transceivers for thermostats and remote control. Nice look, sophisticated programming features, mesh networking, and a ZigBee stack based on the EM2420 (with a private profile of course). They already sold tens of thousands…