The commercial potential of the emerging ZigBee personal wireless networking technology remains unclear, according to industry experts.
The framework acts as an application-profile layer overlay on top of the 802.15.4 physical and media-access-control layers used in low-power wireless mesh networks.
But, although ZigBee continues to evolve, its future importance is still in doubt, reports In-Stat.
"Within the market, there are different philosophies between chipset manufacturers and their approaches," said In-Stat analyst Brian O’Rourke.
"A company like Jennic sees the technology as an application-enabler, focusing on giving clients low-cost tool kits and providing their ZigBee software stack for free for customers who choose to build with their components.
"Ember allows their co-processor chipset, the EM-250, as an add-on for a customer that has application-specific MCUs."
Recent research by In-Stat estimates that the total ZigBee/802.15.4 node and chipset units will reach 120 million in 2011, up from five million in 2006.
The analyst firm notes that the ZigBee Pro feature set released to members in October 2007 includes network scalability, fragmentation, frequency agility, automated device address management, group addressing, wireless commissioning, and centralized data collection.
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