Friday, February 19, 2010

ZigBee Alliance begins certification for sub-1 GHz platforms

SAN RAMON, USA: The ZigBee Alliance, a global ecosystem of companies creating wireless solutions for use in energy management, residential, commercial and consumer electronics applications, today announced it is now offering certification for ZigBee platforms designed to operate in the regional sub-1 GHz unlicensed frequencies. The move ensures original equipment manufacturers a source of tested platforms for use in sub-1 GHz applications.

More semiconductor manufacturers and Alliance members are seeing a growing market for a range of ZigBee device options using the proven ZigBee specification. The Alliance recently completed its first series of multi-vendor interoperability tests for sub-1 GHz platforms. These platforms will become the Golden Units against which all other platforms seeking certification will be compared. They offer the same underlying functions and robust capabilities as existing ZigBee Compliant Platforms operating at 2.4 GHz.

"Adding sub-1 GHz ZigBee compliant platforms meets rising market demands for frequency choice," said Tom Herbst, engineering director at Cisco Systems. "Having these new ZigBee platforms will give product manufacturers more opportunities, and encouragement to use ZigBee in many inventive ways."

Atmel Corp., Exegin Technologies and ZMDI are leading this effort in conjunction with ZigBee Alliance's accredited test houses, National Technical Systems, TRaC Global and TUV Rheinland.

"The sub-1 GHz platforms will give our customers more choices to create customized ZigBee solutions," said Magnus Pedersen, marketing director of Microcontroller Wireless Solutions at Atmel. "We expect these new ZigBee platforms to be an important part of our growing list of ZigBee solutions."

The ZigBee specification has always supported sub-1 GHz platforms, but offering certification of platforms built to the specification requires at least three independent implementations for initial testing and validation. This rigorous certification requirement ensures that Alliance members only deliver interoperable solutions to the marketplace.

"The ZigBee Alliance is committed to offering product manufacturers with certified interoperable solutions," said Bob Heile, chairman of the ZigBee Alliance. "Our certification process clearly demonstrates to product manufacturers that platforms from different vendors, operating in the same European and US sub-1 GHz frequencies, will interoperate."

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