ZigBee stirring

ZigBee has not been dormant, but what with the noise accompanying each and every announcement relating to WiMAX or WiFi, the forward march of this decidedly more modest technology has been conducted largely under the radar. We should take note, though, because a forward march there is. For example:

  • Earlier this year announced its intentions of becoming an important ZigBee player by paying $200 million to acquire Chipcon, the first company to offer a 2.4 GHz 802.15.4-compliant and ZigBee-ready RF transceiver
  • In March Siemens AG joined the ZigBee Alliance
  • Last month Huawei Technologies, Schneider Electric, and STMicroelectronics announced they would lend hand to promote the ZigBee standard at the "promoter" level, meaning that each would have a seat--and a say--on the ZigBee Alliance Board of Directors
  • Also last month, the ZigBee Alliance held its quarterly open house in San Jose, where Tendril Networks CEO Tim Enwall correctly observed that ZigBee is at a "critical mass" turning point

It is four years now since several companies joined forces to champion the standardization of this the low-cost, low-power technology. "We have come a long way in the last few months," says Graham Martin, a Chipcon veteran and now ZigBee worldwide business development manager at TI. "We're now seeing a lot of momentum. The snowball is beginning to roll."

For more ion the state of ZigBee
- check out Monica Alleven's informed WirelessWeek discussion

MORE: See this report about the everyday use of ZigBee chips.

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