Frequently Asked Questions
Andrium Consulting Services
The Zigbee standard has evolved significantly and with the maturing of various chip and stack offerings, it is becoming easier to integrate Zigbee wireless communications into end products. Further, with the increased ubiquity of smart phones and smart phone apps, consumers are coming to expect a smart interface to control, monitor, and automate everyday things in our lives. The technology exists to connect devices to smart Zigbee hubs including gateways, the Amazon Alexa, etc. and to do it at a lower cost.
Andrium Consulting can quickly and efficiently integrate Zigbee firmware into your products and then train your engineering team so they can maintain it going forward. This significantly reduces the learning curve and speeds up your time to market.
Andrium Consulting has brought many products to market quickly and has many years of experience with the Zigbee standard, product development, testing, and certification. Whether it’s developing a Zigbee application from scratch or working together with your engineers to speed up your development schedule, Andrium Consulting brings years of experience and expertise to your engineering team for whatever length of time you need.
Contact Andrium Consulting Services today to see how we can help you speed up your Zigbee design!
With many years of experience doing Zigbee and 802.15.4 designs, testing, and certification, Andrium Consulting has the skills needed to accelerate the time-to-market for your upcoming Zigbee-enabled product. If you are falling behind and need temporary assistance, or if you are wondering if Zigbee can empower your next generation of products, Andrium Consulting can help you take the next leap forward!
Contact Andrium Consulting Services today to see how we can help!
To maintain confidentiality with our clients, we don’t share specific information about products we’ve developed. Generally speaking, Andrium Consulting has developed firmware for devices such as:
- Window Shades
- Smart Outlets
We have also developed software for test fixtures and automated regression testing.
We provide training on various Zigbee-related topics including:
- The Zigbee Protocol
- Joining Principles
- Zigbee Routing and Security
- Zigbee Certification
- An Overview of the Zigbee Software Stack
- Zigbee Design Principles
This training can be tailored to various audiences including engineering, management, and marketing.
Zigbee is a wireless standard for global markets designed for lower bandwidth applications such as lighting control and sensory applications. The Zigbee standard is developed and maintained by the Zigbee Alliance which is a global consortium of over 400 members from over 30 countries. Zigbee supports both point to point, point to multipoint, and mesh routing, where packets can be routed through devices to reach devices that are many “hops” away.
The indoor range is typically up to 100 meters indoors or 300 meters line-of-sight, and the RF data rate is 250kbps. (The actual application data throughput is significantly less and depends on a number of factors.)
The Zigbee standard was first released in 2005 and has since been deployed into an estimated tens of millions of devices around the world in various applications. Lessons have been learned along the way which have helped the Zigbee specification and stack offerings mature and become more robust.
The Zigbee packet transport layers have many built-in provisions to ensure reliable packet delivery. These mechanisms are well-established, tested, and verified as evidenced by the large number of devices and deployments worldwide.
Zigbee defines different node types including a coordinator (who forms and manages the network), routers (who route data packets and can extend the effective range of the network), and end devices. End devices are intended to be battery-powered devices that can sleep at any time. These can have sleep currents in the low microamp range. Coordinators and routers must always be powered on to route data packets.
Most Zigbee device typically use around 10-40mA in receive mode and around 40-150mA or so when transmitting data. The exact current draw depends on the Zigbee chipset, the hardware design, the transmit power, and how often the device transmits data and sleeps (for end devices).
Zigbee also supports green power devices that are self-sufficient and require no batteries. The mechanical action in a green power device (such as flipping a switch, pressing a button, etc) is sufficient to generate the power needed to send a data packet to the Zigbee network.
One way to determine this is to look at the broad spectrum of devices that have already been deployed with Zigbee. The Zigbee Alliance maintains a listing of about 2000 certified products that can be found here. This list includes lights, thermostats, gateways, on/off switches, door locks, sensors (motion, temperature, open/close, etc), outlets, switches, meters, remote controllers, smoke detectors, green-power devices, etc.
Click here for more details on whether Zigbee technology might be a good fit for your application.
Hiring a consultant to assist with development can take away the immediate need to learn and understand the details of Zigbee. However, how much you learn about Zigbee during or after development is up to you. At Andrium Consulting, we are able to provide any level of training during or after development to meet your needs. This can include helping you gain familiarity with development tools like the compiler and packet sniffers, explaining basic Zigbee concepts like joining, security, messaging, and routing, and going through the software solution to ensure you are able to maintain it going forward.