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What is ZigBee

ZigBee

What is ZigBee

ZigBee is an open standard for a low-cost, low-power, wireless mesh network targeted at the wide development of devices for wireless control and monitoring applications. By building on top of the physical layer and media access control defined in the IEEE standard 8.2.15.4 it natively supports mesh networking as well as offering secure communications by default.

Backed by some of the worlds biggest companies, including Philips, Nest, Samsung, Texas, Siemens & Whirlpool, ZigBee technology is currently being built into millions of Smart Home Devices worldwide. Lights, thermostats, alarms, fridges, doors, appliances, utility meters - all are being ZigBee enabled. Recently the likes of Amazon, Apple and Google have all begun to integrate ZigBee into their Smart Speakers and Smart Screens too!

With ZigBee based devices you get a robust, resilient and self-managing system. ZigBee devices are often much simpler than their Z-Wave counterparts, prefering to focus on specific tasks such as motion sensing or dimming a light, rather than trying to combine lots of different functionality into one device.

During the early years they often used "closed" protocols at the application layer, meaning that products from different vendors wouldn't interoperate, but fortunately the standard has been through many revisions to improve this. Broadly speaking there are two ZigBee profiles in use - ZigBee Light Link (ZLL) and ZigBee Home Automation (ZHA). Devices within each profile should work together out-of-the-box and, as long as your ZigBee Controller supports a specific profile, devices from that profile should work within it.

ZigBee also uses a single frequency globally - the 2.4GHz band (the same as 2.4GHz WiFi). This means that you can use devices from around the world in your ZigBee network without having to worry about picking the correct frequency! For further information see the Silicon Labs reference.

There's also an emerging standard called ZigBee 3.0 which merges both the ZLL and ZHA profiles, combining the strengths of each into one new standard. In most cases ZigBee 3.0 devices are backwards compatible with ZigBee Controllers that only support ZLL or ZHA.

The ZigBee Alliance now promotes ZigBee as the protocol for the so-called "Internet of Things" (IoT) due to its open and non-proprietary nature and because it is now a mature, reliable and clearly defined standard.

ZigBee offers FIVE key solutions in its portfolio:

ZigBee

Zigbee creates flexibility for developers & end users, while delivering stellar interoperability. Created on IEEE’s 802.15.4 using the 2.4GHz band and a self-healing true mesh network, Zigbee has many applications and is widely implemented across the globe.

dotdot

Dotdot gives product developers the freedom to choose the network that works for their application, and consumers the freedom to choose the brands and products that transform the way we live, work and play.

Green Power

Green Power is a battery-less feature for smart networks cast across large facilities. Green Power enables wireless devices to be powered utilizing energy-harvesting methods with limited or no batteries.

Smart Energy

Smart Energy is the world’s leading standard for interoperable products that monitor, control, inform and automate the delivery and use of energy and water. It helps create greener homes by giving consumers the information and automation needed to easily reduce their consumption.

JupiterMesh

JupiterMesh is the robust, low-power industrial IoT wireless mesh network with flexible data rates that enables neighborhood and field area communications for utilities and municipalities deploying intelligent grid and smart city solutions.

Connecting ZigBee devices

Connecting ZigBee devices is extremely easy and user friendly, most times requiring only a single click to add a ZigBee device into your home network.

Athom Homey ZigBee Device

Step 1

Step 2

Module Inclusion

Access Athom Home Device Wizard

Press the button on the Device

SmartThings Multipurpose Sensor

Step 1

Step 2

Module Inclusion

Select Connect "New Device" in the SmarthThings App

Remove the "Remove to Pair" tab found in the Multipurpose Sensor

SmartThings Water Leak Sensor

Step 1

Step 2

Module Inclusion

Open the Vera App and click "Add Device"

Remove the "Remove to Pair" tab found in the Multipurpose Sensor

Philips Hue Bloom

Step 1

Step 2

Module Inclusion

Power up the Bloom

Press and hold the dimmer switch On button until the LED turns green

Philips Hue Bulbs

Step 1

Step 2

Module Inclusion

Press the "+" button to start adding a bulb

Power up the bulb

Note: Some steps removed

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