ADT is looking to "bring the voice of the customer" into the continuing development and expansion of Z-Wave, the radio frequency (RF) communication and product-level interoperability technology that enables wireless networking of battery-powered devices in the home. ADT is the newest Principal Member of the Z-Wave Alliance consortium.
Z-Wave is one of the enabling technologies of ADT’s Pulse security and home automation system, which enables a home's electronics to communicate with each other and with the user. Z-Wave unifies devices like door locks and lighting controls into an integrated network.
ADT is the Z-Wave Alliance’s seventh and newest Principal Member, and also the first service-based company represented on the Z-Wave Board of Directors. The other Principal Members are original equipment manufacturers GE/Jasco, Ingersoll-Rand, Linear, Evolve, FAKRO and Sigma Designs.
“As a service provider who touches the end user directly, we bring a different perspective that rounds out the Z-Wave board,”says Steve Shapiro, ADT’s Vice President of Industry Relations. ADT was previously a full-level member and has been active in the Z-Wave Alliance since implementing Z-Wave as part of ADT Pulse. Becoming a Principal Member “reaffirms [ADT’s] commitment to the technology going forward,” he adds.
The Z-Wave Alliance oversees development and implementation of the technology. The Alliance is made up of member companies participating at various tiers in technology working groups and accessing the technology to develop products. The Z-Wave Alliance includes 160 full-level members involved in developing products and about 110 Affiliate members (mostly resellers and installers). At the top level of the Z-Wave Alliance are the companies that guide development and implementation of the technology, the Principal Members whose representatives make up the Alliance Board of Directors. Shapiro is joining the Z-Wave Alliance Board.
Z-Wave technology is used throughout
Z-Wave technology is used throughout the security and home automation markets, enabling radio frequency (RF) communication and product-level interoperability among battery-powered devices in the home, including climate controls, door locks, security sensors, appliances and remote control. There are 1,000 or so products from 100 companies that are Z-Wave certified, which means they communicate within a 50-foot range using low power consumption that allows one- or two-year battery life.
Mesh networks of these devices, each communicating and also relaying signals from other devices, can extend the operable range to cover an entire house or small commercial facility. Z-Wave enables greater wireless networking in the home and realization of home automation systems with more capabilities.
“ADT adds a complementary view to the board based on their knowledge of customer needs,” says Mark Walters, Z-Wave Alliance chairman. “Having North America’s leader in residential security advising the Z-Wave Alliance at the Board level brings a focus to that market segment in terms of guiding the alliance in both marketing and technical development. Security companies now have someone representing them who understands and directly participates in their business.” Principal Members must be nominated by an existing Principal Member and then approved by the Board of Directors.
“We are not just a security company, but a service provider for home and business automation,” Shapiro says. “Security is a great platform for automation, and it’s a natural combination.” He notes that 44 percent of ADT customers opt for the ADT Pulse service, and the number has been climbing quarter over quarter since 2010. “It confirms how the different kinds of systems make sense together,” he says.