Z-Wave Smart Home Standard on the Rise

Z-Wave Alliance reports 60 percent growths in membership surpass 600 members.

Image courtesy of the Z-Wave Alliance.

Image courtesy of the Z-Wave Alliance.

Internet of Things (IoT) engineers developing smart home products may want to put some thought into the increasingly popular Z-Wave standard. According to the Z-Wave Alliance, a consortium of IoT companies using Z-Wave, adoption of the communication technology is on the rise; the Alliance recently reported a near sixty percent growth in membership to surpass 600 Alliance members.

Some familiar names in the Alliance include D-Link, Honeywell, Huawei, Logitech, Nokia, Panasonic and Verizon. You’ll only count 363 companies on the official membership page, so I’m not sure how the Alliance is doing its tally, but the Z-Wave Alliance also includes several affiliated organizations (e.g. NIST, the National Institute of Standards and Technology) as well as a repository of certified Z-Wave installers.

The Alliance’s 600 member companies have a reported total of 2,100 Z-Wave devices currently on the smart home market, all of which are interoperable. Of those, nearly half are certified as Z-Wave Plus,the certification program for devices using the latest fifth-generation Z-Wave platform. Also known as the 500 Series, Z-Wave Plus devices improve upon classic Z-Wave devices in battery life, range, bandwidth and more, while maintaining backward compatibility with the previous generations.

With consumer awareness of the IoT continuing to rise (so much so that last year was dubbed the “Year of the Smart Device”), now may be the best time to enter the smart home market. And choosing a popular standard like Z-Wave may be the best strategy for going to market as quickly as possible, not to mention drafting in the slipstream of bigger companies in the Alliance.

“Z-Wave continues to grow exponentially and shatter records, both in certified devices available to consumers and global companies supporting the advancement of the standard,” said Z-Wave Alliance Executive Director Mitchell Klein. “We know this increased momentum is due to Z-Wave’s interoperability, security, network strength and diverse ecosystem; it really is a solution that’s custom built for the connected home.”

At the very least, whatever standard you eventually adopt, be sure to include Z-Wave in your consideration. To learn more about the standard and the Z-Wave Alliance, read “A Mandatory Security Framework for IoT Devices.”

Written by

Michael Alba

Michael is a senior editor at engineering.com. He covers computer hardware, design software, electronics, and more. Michael holds a degree in Engineering Physics from the University of Alberta.