2020 and Beyond: A Record Year for Zigbee as the Leading Networking Technology for Smart Home and Building

Ben Grossman Jan 07, 2021
Connected Devices Spotlight Smart Home News

Editor's Note: This article was originally published by the Zigbee Alliance on their website.

As we enter the New Year, it’s an opportune time to reflect on Zigbee’s incredible achievements and momentum. 2020 was a record-breaking year for Zigbee, with more than 560 certified devices launched, a 31% increase from 2019 and millions of Zigbee-based smart devices in customer’s hands. With over half a billion Zigbee chipsets sold and nearly 4 billion expected to ship by 2023, Zigbee continues to be one of the world’s most popular Internet of Things (IoT) standards used by millions of devices and customers, backed by key players in the industry through the Zigbee Alliance. The Alliance’s membership continues to expand its reach as the leading organization at the center of the future of IoT, across 37 countries and more.  The demand for smart home devices continues to grow, and the Alliance continues to drive openness and interoperability through Zigbee standards and lead the way for IP in the IoT. More and more companies like Amazon, Comcast, IKEA, Samsung SmartThings, Signify, and Yale are using Zigbee for its reliability, openness, affordability, proven adoption, and interoperability when choosing to build smart home devices. The standard continues to evolve with new features on the way, with development focused on security, a Sub-GHz solution, Dynamic Link Key and Low Latency End Devices.

This continued investment in Zigbee unlocks opportunities for developers and product companies to build on that market momentum. And, as we look forward to 2021, it’s a good time to hear from our members about their success with Zigbee and some of the latest and greatest Zigbee-enabled products to hit the market that are making the lives of consumers more connected and convenient.


LEEDARSON helps brands design & develop IoT products with Zigbee

With Zigbee, LEEDARSON has continued to expand their connected product portfolio and in 2020 launched a series of twenty-five lighting, control and energy management Zigbee-certified devices. These exciting new devices incorporate all the advantages of Zigbee including low-power efficiency, reliability, and scalability. LEEDARSON will continue to invest in building Zigbee products because it offers a total connected solution for their customers and partners in commercial and smart home spaces.

“Now more than ever people need good connections – between each other, and among the devices and ecosystems that keep their lives and businesses on track and moving forward. Our team of IoT experts is dedicated to helping customers and partners bring to market superb hardware and services to facilitate these important connections – many of which are based on our award-winning IoT portfolio featuring proven Zigbee antennas and modules for reliable and secure interactions.” - John E. Osborne II, President, LEEDARSON North America and Chairperson Emeritus of the Zigbee Alliance

Some of the Zigbee-based ODM innovations LEEDARSON will promote from their CES 2021 Exhibitor Showcase January 11-14 include:

  • Smart Switch Technologies: Transform old, static lamps into innovative, smart lights with our newest in-wall smart dimmer switches. Control bulb functionality, schedules and personalized scenes from the wall or through voice assistants or phone app – while home or offsite.
  • Smart Thermostatic Radiator Valve (TRV): Brand-new smart TRV technology helps maintain just the right temperature within each room, while delivering energy efficiencies and convenience. Schedule and control comfort settings through your phone or via Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant.
  • Sensor Innovation – mmWave: This transformative technology that’s embedded in IoT devices allows for applications such as people counting, human stance detection (standing, sitting, falling, laying), and Adult versus Child recognition for utmost safety and monitoring of many scenes and situations.


Signify builds on Zigbee to create surround lighting for home entertainment

“Last year, we tapped into the power of the Zigbee mesh network to enable a new way to sync smart lights to video. Because Zigbee is so reliable and easily extensible, we were able to create a seamless surround lighting experience for our consumers. The Philips Hue Bridge, the brains of our smart lighting system, unlocks surround lighting and allows us to offer these unique features — even using original Hue smart bulbs released in 2012. It is because of the stability and scalability of Zigbee that we can ensure a future-proof smart home solution,” - Jasper Vervoort, SVP Signify, Business leader Philips Hue.


Silicon Labs enables partners to build more efficient devices with Zigbee

“Silicon Labs' partners leverage our Zigbee solutions to create products with extremely small footprints, including ultra low-power sensors using our Zigbee Green Power solution that enables an incredibly long battery life with only 32KB of RAM. Our full featured software stack and chip sets have been heavily deployed in cost sensitive products such as light bulbs, while also enabling resources to support ‘must-have’ features, such as over-the-air updates. Zigbee is a field-tested, market-proven protocol with millions of devices deployed, including the millions of devices using our patented Wi-Fi coexistence solution for Zigbee, enhancing network performance in the 2.4GHz space. We are excited to enable the innovative connected products our partners launch. With so many certified and interoperable Zigbee systems in homes and offices across the world, we plan to continue investing and growing our Zigbee business and see it as a safe bet for IoT product makers.” - Jacob Alamat, VP and GM, IoT Home & Consumer BU at Silicon Labs


Ubisys evolves with Zigbee and expands product offerings for residential and commercial spaces

“Zigbee’s ability to integrate battery-less, wireless, ultra-low power devices into a highly interoperable mesh-backbone has enabled us to offer hassle-free, maintenance-free IoT experiences to our customers all over the world. This past year we launched the ubisys dashboard which utilizes Zigbee to monitor energy and environmental data, we partnered with Signify to bring ubisys’s G1 Gateway to the commercial lighting control space, and we are particularly proud about the introduction of our Zigbee and Bluetooth module which acts as drop in solution for many applications starting with lighting control. Looking into 2021 we are excited to continue bringing new Zigbee products to the market and to continue developing new solutions that allow our customers to seamlessly interact with their Zigbee devices.” - Arasch Honarbacht, Managing Director & CTO, ubisys technologies GmbH


Amazon announces new devices with built-in Zigbee hubs

In September, Amazon announced its new 4th-gen Echo and the eero 6 Series mesh wifi routers with built-in Zigbee smart home hubs, making smart home devices simpler and more accessible to the millions of customers who use Amazon's Alexa. Customers can purchase from a wide selection of Zigbee devices on amazon.com, plug their devices in and simply say "Alexa, discover my devices" and their Echo devices will discover and set up compatible Zigbee light bulbs, door locks, switches, plugs, and more- without the need to buy separate Zigbee smart home hubs.

“Our goal for smart home is that it should be simpler and more accessible for customers. Selection has increased dramatically, in part driven by smart home technology like Zigbee that is simpler for smart home makers and customers to adopt. Including a built-in Zigbee smart home hub into our newest Echo and eero devices makes it easier for everybody; it makes it easier for device manufacturers to build Alexa-connected devices and tap into the growing smart home market, which gives customers more choice, making smart home a reality for more customers than ever." -Daniel Rausch, Amazon Vice President of Smart Home.


Join the Zigbee Alliance

The Zigbee Alliance is the foundation and future of the Internet of Things. The Alliance’s wide ranging and diverse membership, robust certification programs, and a full suite of open IoT solutions are leading the movement toward a more intuitive, imaginative, and useful world. Global membership increased this year as companies joined the Alliance to collaborate and evolve the universal open standards. With 40% of the Alliance’s newest members joining to evolve the Zigbee standard.

“Zigbee continues to be an anchoring technology across the IoT market as our members develop products for smart homes and buildings,” said Tobin Richardson, President and CEO of the Zigbee Alliance. “Investment in the technology deepens as members develop and evolve the Zigbee standard and implement their products and platforms.”

If you are not part of the Zigbee Alliance, we invite you to join us and our hundreds of members impacting the global IoT. To learn more please visit the Zigbee Alliance website.