The Zigbee Alliance Celebrates 15 Years and A Decade of Standards

As a standards organization, the Zigbee Alliance’s very reason for existing is to help bring interoperable products to market to benefit companies and consumers alike. We’ve now been focused on this mission to create valuable connections for 15 years. What started out as 25 tech-savvy companies back in 2002, has grown into a group of 400+ organizations from 37 countries. Each day these tech veterans and IoT up-and-comers lend tremendous expertise to our collective goal of facilitating meaningful interactions between humans and the devices around us.

Along this 15-year journey, the Zigbee Alliance has introduced many industry specifications and standards, certified 2,200+ product types, and paved the way for what today is called the Internet of Things (IoT).  In October 2002, we formed to create global standards to connect the widest range of devices into secure, low-cost, low-power and easy-to-use wireless sensor and control networks. The first Zigbee-based products launched in 2006.  In 2007, we brought our home automation standard to market, which is the basis for what today is called the Zigbee Cluster Library. This library is the application layer at the heart of what’s coming next step in the Zigbee evolution: Dotdot.

Leveraging our 15 years of knowledge and design, Zigbee Alliance members continue to innovate and build on the progress and successes we’ve worked hard to create over the years. Each technology cycle is tested, evaluated and fine-tuned, and in early 2017 we proudly unveiled a culmination of Zigbee history and future pathways with Dotdot – the universal language of the IoT. The beauty of this open, mature technology is that it can be applied across other IoT networks, taps into a diverse supply chain, offers developers flexibility and speed in building their products and business today, and makes ‘smart’ interactions work for everyone as every day, connected objects will speak to each other effortlessly across any wireless network running in the home, building or neighborhood.

During our first 15 years, Zigbee applications gained tremendous traction in the smart home (lighting, closures, HVAC), commercial buildings (offices, workers, conference-goers, hotel chains), manufacturing (industrial, factory), smart cities (municipalities large and small, civic services, emergency services), larger grid-based operations and intermodal transportation.  As we turn into 2018 and look ahead at the next 15 years, our members are determined to solve the fragmentation challenges that plague our industry today and are slowing down the IoT renaissance – making it hard for consumers to get the full value of the IoT promise. We’re asking invested organizations and industry groups to join our charge so together we can do more to drive the IoT market forward – especially in the smart home and smart building segments. Working in tandem, we can create linkages – not barriers – between products and market segments. Collectively, we’re all setting our sights on consolidation and harmonization, and that’s going to move the mark to achieve mass IoT embracement.

The world of the Internet is burgeoning with possibilities to make daily connections more convenient and captivating. We’re honored to have hit the 15-year milestone as part of this experience, and have game-changing ambition and resources to continue innovating in this far-reaching space. If you’re not already in the Zigbee Alliance fold, consider joining us to bring the impact of the IoT to billions of people around the planet.