SOME OF THE LEADING COMPANIES IN THE home-control industry created an alliance earlier this year to market Z-Wave wireless technology developed by Zensys. Z-Wave is a two-way wireless technology that lets homeowners monitor and manage home-control products such as lighting, security systems, thermostats, garage door openers, and entertainment systems with a radio frequency–based remote control device and over the Internet. Some of the companies that joined the group include Danfoss, Intermatic, Leviton, and Wayne Dalton.
More than 60 companies representing 70 products are planning to support Z-Wave. An additional 100 Z-Wave products will ship this summer. The first round of products will be sold through retail stores, followed by electrical distributors. Products range from dimmers and switches to remote controls, USB devices, and garage door controllers.
“We want to do for home control what Wi-Fi did for wireless networking,” says Raul Wijger-gangs, vice president for business development at Zensys, who adds that all the products that support Z-Wave will ship with the Z-Wave logo.
“It's kind of like Intel Inside,” says Mark Cerasuolo, Leviton's director of brand development, who explains that the group moved to adopt Z-Wave because the ZigBee group didn't formally adopt its standard until late last year.
“I think ZigBee will do well in the industrial control space, but for the home market, Z-Wave has been able to capture the de facto standard,” says Cerasuolo.
Alliance members expect to display the products in action at model homes later this year. For information, visit www.z-wavealliance.com.