I recently saw that Silicon Labs recently announced a 800 series of Z-Wave chips. Z-Wave 800 Modem SoC - Silicon Labs
I could not figure out any "significant' features this adds (presumably it brings routine upgrades like faster processor, more memory, and other nondescript / routine chip stuff), but anybody else know if something more significant is underway with Z-Wave specifically?
I noted the mutli-protocol support (Wi-SUN, Amazon Sidewalk, etc.) but am specifically interested in Z-Wave.
Just the normal higher specs and higher power Long Range..
I’m hoping this will be the catalyst that will finally get manufacturers adopting LR
Thanks. I was hoping to see a chip that could simultaneously do Long Range and regular mesh - i.e., so you could put a repeater somewhere with Long Range to the hub, but still repeat the nodes that used "regular" Z-Wave. Essentially, making everything a "no more than one intermediate hop" connection.
Don’t count on that ever happening.. The classic mesh routing is completely incompatible with this… So they would have to re-write the original mesh and thus break backwards compatibility
Got it. That's quite unfortunate. In my mind, at least, that limits LR to a few use cases - battery operated devices that don't repeat, sensors, and nodes that are far away from the main hub so they can't reach other mesh nodes. If one were to replace regular z-wave nodes that are in range of and can participate in the main" mesh, you're essentially removing repeaters and weakening the mesh structure. In any case, its taken several years just to get 700 series devices out in mass, so this is likely a concern for quite a few years from now!
Eventually I see this as the standard.. Since LR devices are backwards compatible and can be included in a classic mesh.. Eventually there will be no need for classic mesh when all your devices are capable of LR..
I don't see it that way at all.
If all LR devices always have good enough single to get back to the hub, why would you want to mesh at all? Why have extra variables, extra hops, and more points of failure in the signal path?
In fact I see at the exact opposite way, it completely obsoletes the mesh long term.
Edit: now that I read Bryan's post, I guess I just regurgitated basically what he said. LOL
Hopefully I'm wrong as the technology seems like a nice advance, but I'm looking at it with the view of already having about 100 devices. If I were to use LR, it would be a transitional process, not a replace-all-at-once. In a transition, if replacing routing / meshed devices, my expectation is that the remaining mesh would lose nodes one-by-one as you transition thus reducing path diversity and weaking the mesh connection (unless you were fortunate enough to choose the "far edge" nodes that never got used for routing). Though I supposed this isn't a concern until there are actual devices to consider!
The thing I hope for with the 800 chips is that they will actually be available in ready supply... Shortages of 700 series chips have dampened a lot of activity there. Improvements are nice, but irrelevant if there is limited supply.
That seems to be hurting Z-Wave far more lately than ZigBee from what I have seen.
No doubt your existing mesh would lose robustness as you remove nodes. But there are so many low cost repeater/wall plug devices one can use to supplement that I'm not sure it is much more than a minor inconvenience in the end.
I agree, though, that if a single device could do BOTH that it would be even more convenient. But they can't.
Transitionally you can always run two hubs, one LR and one traditional mesh.
I don't think that is necessary (someone will correct me if I'm wrong).
The HUB can do mesh + LR at the same time, but a device can not do both at the same time.
I’d love to correct you, but unfortunately you are correct this time.
Not that that would matter, I mean logically people aware will keep mesh closer and throw the LR stuff in at farther places (lets say detached garage or end of a long driveway) and as older things go out, replace with LR.... I think in the end while it will take time, transition should be smooth. Though can LR route to a mesh? For instance if someone has an outbuilding with a mains powered LR device, can that route to regular 500/700 devices that outbuilding might have? (door sensors etc) allowing older stuff to be of use?
No, and that was the earlier point.
If you start replacing non-LR with LR, if the old device was needed to route for other mesh devices then you may start having mesh issues as you replace with LR devices.
So people doing a planned migration from one to the other may need to buy a few ring extenders, or other sacrificial cheap devices, to keep their mesh healthy until the end.