Z-Wave Alliance Certifies 500th Product
The Z-Wave Alliance has announced its 500th Z-Wave certified product. This milestone comes on the heels of other recent announcements including: Sigma Designs’ naming Mitsumi as a licensed second source for Z-Wave wireless RF technology and the deployment of the largest single installations of Z-Wave at the Wynn Hotel in Las Vegas with 65,000 devices. GreenWave Reality’s Home Energy Management solution, a smart meter reader for the European market from NorthQ ApS and four new lighting controls from GE/ Jasco were also recently added to the Z-Wave ecosystem.
The 500th product certified is a Z-Wave bridge controller from Alliance member Somfy Systems Inc., a manufacturer of specialized motors and control systems for retractable awnings, rolling shutters, interior shades, blinds, projection screens, and other lift-up applications for the home. The bridge controller, ZRTSI, opens Somfy’s full range of interior and exterior wireless control motors for window coverings, light switches, dimmers, thermostats/HVAC systems, and motion sensors to the Z-Wave interoperable ecosystem.
HomeSeer Announces HomeTroller-SE Home Automation Controller
HomeSeer Technologies has unveiled its new HomeTroller-SE home automation controller. The new controller is a gateway device that offers remote home control using the latest Apple and Android smart phones, tablet PCs, and other devices.
Shipping this month, the HomeTroller-SE features an all solid-state design that supports Z-Wave and many other industry standard home automation technologies.
Unlike other competing gateway units, HomeTroller-SE supports voice control and can issue alerts, announcements and reminders by email, text message or by voice (text to speech). Integration interfaces are available for use with lighting, climate control, security, telephone, audio-video, and energy management hardware.
Crestron to Z-Wave Control Interface with Software
The CZ5000 Z-Wave software was developed by Zwave Products with a Crestron Authorized Independent Programmer, and is the easiest way for any Crestron system to control Z-Wave enabled devices already on the market. It was designed as a simple Crestron software interface supported by Zwave Products that will allow you to add affordable robust Z-Wave controls to your systems. No additional hardware or software changes are needed to create lighting scenes and control all Z-Wave devices on the market. It can create 40 different scenes and independently control up to 256 devices in your Z-Wave network.
The CZ5000 includes a Vera 2 and Crestron to Z-Wave software on an accompanying CD. The Crestron Z-Wave Control software (version 1.0) uses the MiCasa Verde VERA 2 to control Z-Wave devices. This software provides a series of individual modules that the user can include within their Crestron program to control Z-Wave Binary Lights, Dimmers, Door Locks, PIRs, Thermostats, VERA created scenes and other user installed VERA Plugins. An example Crestron program is included in the distribution package that demonstrates how to use the various Crestron modules included in this package.
Each module communicates to one central module that is responsible for communication to/from the Vera 2. Each communication module (VERA2 Interface) is keyed to work with one specific VERA 2 device. Upon startup this communication module queries the VERA for its serial number. If the serial number of the VERA matches the Serial number embedded within the communication module then the capability of the software is enabled. Now shipping, the CZ5000 includes a Vera 2 and Crestron to Z-wave software on an accompanying CD.
Evolve Guest Controls Joins the Z-Wave Alliance as Principal Member
The Z-Wave Alliance has announced the addition of Evolve Guest Controls as its newest principal member. Evolve Guest Controls, a provider of energy management solutions, offers a comprehensive solution to its hospitality customers via Z-Wave energy and devices management tools for in-room control options, including: lighting, TV, electronics and thermostat products. To date, Evolve Guest Controls has installed the largest Z-Wave commercial instillation project with more than 65,000 Z-Wave enabled devices in a single hotel.
Evolve has deployed energy management and wireless RF systems in tens of thousands of hotel rooms and suites, including Hilton hotels, Westin hotels and The Wynn Hotel and Casino. Throughout the years, hotels have begun adding new technologies to rooms and incorporating energy saving programs to help guests lower their carbon footprint
Updated May 23, 2011
Sigma Designs Licenses Mitsumi as Second Source
“We are pleased to be able to offer modules based upon Sigma’s Z-Wave technology,” says Fujio Furukawa, vice president at Network Devices Business HQ of Mitsumi. “The market for Z-Wave is booming and we want to capitalize on Z-Wave’s global potential. Further we are very exited to drive Z-Wave further in the Japanese market where the interest in Z-Wave technology has great potential for energy reduction applications.”
With Mitsumi as a certified second source, Sigma plans to extend the global acceptance of Z-Wave devices, while continuing the assurance of 100% interoperability in the market of all Z-Wave devices.
Updated May 12, 2011
Evolve Installs Custom Energy Management System at Hilton’s Inn
Evolve Guest Controls has completed installation of its custom keycard-based energy management system in 244 guest rooms and suites at the Hilton Inn at Penn’in Philadelphia.
Evolve’s keycard-based EMS system controls all of the lighting in the rooms, as well as the televisions, and the HVAC. When the guest enters the room, they insert their keycard into Evolve’s wall-mounted keycard reader and the room activates “comfort” mode.
When the guest leaves, they take their keycard with them, initiating the room’s “energy efficient” mode, which powers down the lighting devices and TV and sets the thermostat back 5 degrees.
To further expand on its standard keycard system, Evolve has added a few additional features including a “safety delay” of 10-seconds at the entry when initiating “energy efficient” mode, and a wall mounted LCD five-button controller in the bathroom for comfort and convenience.
“The ‘safety delay’ feature was designed specifically with the guest in mind,” says Jesse Nercessian, Field Operations Manager of Evolve. “By enabling the entry light to remain lit for 10 seconds after removing their keycard, we are able to provide a completely visible exit path from the room.”
Updated April 18, 2011
Hotels Realize Energy Savings with Z-Wave Guest Controls
Although we typically think of Z-Wave products populating and controlling home devices, the uses can be found at any scale. Recently the Wynn Hotel in Las Vegas rolled out its deployment of Z-Wave based Evolve Guest Controls, which promise to realize a savings of 25 to 40 percent of guest room utility costs.
Now deployed in over 2,700 rooms, the Evolve LCD Director Series offers each guest the control over motorized draperies and sheers, communication with housekeeping, adjust the temperature, and put the room into energy efficiency mode when it’s unoccupied.
Each of the devices is built on an expandable platform. The Evolve Tabletop RF Scene Controller combines three programmable five-button keypads together to provide direct control of up to 15 individual network scene commands. These include lighting scenes, HVAC and drapery control.
Similar systems are currently deployed in other properties in New York, Washington DC, California, Florida, and North Carolina. When the Westin Georgetown deployed the system, it saw an immediate reduction in energy usage by up to 40 percent.
While Evolve typically sells directly to hotels and commercial buildings, it does have a residential line available through its three master distributors Worthington Distribution, Automated Outlet, and Video Security Specialists.
Updated January 13, 2011
Somfy Launches TaHomA Home Automation Solution
Somfy Systems launched TaHomA, which lets you control your home’s “energy triangle” of window coverings, lighting, and thermostats at last week’s CES show in Las Vegas.
Available for purchase in the first half of 2011, TaHomA will let you control, schedule and supervise your Z-Wave enabled window coverings, lighting, and thermostats. Accessible from a computer, iPad or iPhone within or outside the home, TaHomA’s Web-based interface guides you with intuitive graphics and step-by-step prompts as they personalize your home energy functions.
The system requires installation by a certified Somfy TaHomA Expert dealer who can tailor the operation of the TaHomA gateway controller and each Z-Wave and RTS wireless controlled device according to your needs.
When plugged into a home’s network router, TaHomA automatically connects and configures to the home network and Somfy’s remote support server allowing TaHomA to locate all of the Z-Wave and RTS wireless controlled devices.
Scenes are created with a blend of various devices with personalized settings and pre-scheduled hours of automatic operation for each day of the week. Once the specifications and schedule have been determined for each of the Z-Wave and RTS wireless controlled devices in the house, TaHomA will automatically control these devices 24/7, 365 days a year.
Creating and scheduling “scenes” helps you simplify and optimize your home’s natural and artificial lighting, heating, and cooling needs. The TaHomA controller operates with Z-Wave enabled light switches and dimmers, thermostats, motion sensors and Somfy RTS controlled motorized window coverings such as blinds, shades and awnings.
January 8, 2011
BuLogics and Evolve Demonstrate Energy Saving Product Suite
BuLogics and its strategic partner Evolve Guest Controls demonstrated their energy saving suite of products at CES 2011 in the Z-Wave Pavilion. Combining the Z-Wave technology of BuLogics with Evolve Guest Controls, the displayed product line reduces energy 30-50 percent in large implementations such as hotels.
The product line uses the Z-Wave mesh network to communicate between energy saving devices that can be installed in forty minutes or less per hotel room. These energy saving solutions can be installed in existing buildings, without the monetary costs of expensive installations.
“The hospitality and healthcare markets have been seeking a technology that will eliminate complicated, time-consuming installations and are simple to retrofit current structures, says Len Horowitz, president of Evolve. “Together with the Z-Wave expertise of BuLogics, Evolve’s product line is second to none for effective energy reduction with an approximate ROI for hoteliers of two years.”
Jasco Rolls Out New GE Z-Wave Remote
Jasco Products introduced its new GE Z-Wave Wireless Lighting Control LCD Remote at the CES this week. With one remote, you can program movie night, check or adjust the temperature and lock or unlock your doors. The GE Z-Wave Wireless Lighting Control LCD Remote sells for MSRP $99.99, and is designed to provide reliable home control that let’s you take control, feel safe and save energy.
Yale Intros Locks Designed to Integrate into the Digital Home
Touchscreen deadbolt and lever locks are the first products in Yale Locks & Hardware’s new portfolio of intelligent home control and Security Solutions, which were unveiled at CES. Available with either a touchscreen or pushbutton key pad, Yale’s new Z-Wave supported platform of intelligent locks will integrate seamlessly into a wide range of home control and security systems.
At CES, Yale displayed the locks in the Z-Wave pavilion operating with multiple home control systems, including the including theMi Casa Verde Vera Z-Wave home control system. Regardless of the home control system employed, users will be able to lock and unlock doors from any web-enabled device events or create customized entry scenes for family members, neighbors and guests.
Available in Spring 2011, the locks are expected to sell for $200-$400. Features of the new locks include voice assisted programming in English, Spanish and French; personalized access-control scenes for up to 250 users; and access to all user programmable settings are available to the controller interfaces via select user interfaces.
January 5, 2011
Z-Wave Alliance Announces New Members, Services at CES
The Z-Wave Alliance is releasing new products and services and showcasing home control and automation demonstrations from its members at CES 2011 this week.
HomeSeer Technologies Unveils HomeTroller-Mini
HomeSeer Technologies rolled out its HomeTroller-Mini home automation controller this week at the 2011 CES show in Las Vegas. Slated to begin shipping in the 2nd quarter of 2011 (for under $300), the new controller is powerful gateway device that offers remote home control using the latest Apple and Android smart phones, tablet PCs and other devices.
The HomeTroller-Mini, which fits in the palm of your hand, sports an energy efficient 1.0 GHz Linux platform. As with other HomeTrollers, HomeTroller-Mini supports Z-Wave. Alerts, announcements and reminders may be issued by email, text message or by voice (text to speech). Home energy usage may also be monitor and controlled with HomeTroller-Mini.
Schlage will be demonstrating new LiNK features at CES. Find out more at Cocoontech.com.
December 15, 2010
HomeSeer Releases Android App for Home Control and Automation
HomeSeer Technologies has announced its HSTouch client app for the Android OS. Available now in the Android Market, HSTouch is a fully customizable, graphical interface for all HomeSeer home automation systems and will run on virtually any touchscreen including in-wall, stand-alone, tablet and wireless handheld devices.
HSTouch integrates tightly with all HomeSeer home automation systems and the screens are fully customizable to work with virtually all backgrounds, buttons and graphics. An integrated RSS browser is also included for easy access popular data feeds for weather, news, sports and stock information.
HSTouch is IP-enabled and may be used to monitor and control remote HomeSeer installations, including secondary residences. It’s designed to run on Windows, Windows CE, Linux, iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad and now Android devices, ensuring compatibility with the widest range of touchscreens currently available.
Integrators will appreciate the remote deployment functions in HSTouch. Unlike other programs of this type, HSTouch allows projects to be created or edited remotely and then deployed to customer sites without the need for a site visit or service call.
All HomeSeer automation systems are designed to work seamlessly with industry standards and Z-Wave products from leading manufacturers such as Cooper, Schlage, Kwikset, Lutron, Leviton, Russound, Microsoft, Centralite, DSC, Aprilaire, ACT, RCS and others.
Schlage LiNK System Adds Android App
Schlage has announced that Android phone owners can now download the app for the Schlage LiNK home management system. Available for download in the Android Market, this free app makes it possible for owners of Android phones to monitor and control Z-Wave enabled locks, thermostats and other devices such as Schlage cameras from their Android phones, in addition to any computer with Internet access.
“Owners of smartphone’s based on Google’s Android platform will now be able to enjoy the benefits of remote home management through the affordable Schlage LiNK System,” said Dwight Gibson, vice president and general manager, Connected Home Solutions for Ingersoll Rand, the parent company of Schlage.
In addition to Google’s Android platform, the Schlage LiNK mobile application is available for the Apple iPhone and Research in Motion’s BlackBerry as well as devices running Microsoft’s Windows Mobile 5 or higher. “Having Android in the mix means owners of the three most popular phones will be able to receive text messages when the kids get home from school, monitor live camera feeds on their phones and even reduce heating bills by adjusting their home temperature from almost anywhere,” Gibson said.
The basic Schlage LiNK Starter Kit ($249 with rebate*) includes a wireless keypad lock or deadbolt, a remote control lighting module and everything needed to set up a wireless Z-Wave network in the home. A single Schlage LiNK System will support an unlimited number of IP network cameras and up to 232 Z-Wave enabled devices, all of which would be covered under one $8.99 per month subscription fee. Options include the Schlage WCW100 wireless camera ($179**), Schlage WCE100 wired camera ($149), Trane Remote Energy Management Thermostat ($149, model TZEMT400AB32) and Schlage light module ($49.99).
* Schlage LiNK Starter Kit rebate available through December 31, 2010. See link.schlage.com for full terms and conditions.
** Buy one get one free wireless camera offer available through December 31, 2010 in select Lowe’s, RadioShack and BestBuy locations and online at HomeDepot.com, RadioShack.com and BestBuy.com
Z-Wave Alliance Announces Its Newest Principal Member: 2GIG Technologies
“The security alarm panel is evolving from a security solution into the hub for total home management — from lighting to energy management,” said Raoul Wijgergangs, chairman of the Z-Wave Alliance. “And it’s the security vendors — such as 2GIG — that are leading the charge in innovation and deployments with services that solve multiple issues in the home all enabled by Z-Wave home control.”
Responding to the trends and consumer demand in the residential security landscape, 2GIG Technologies manufactures a self-contained security and home management system, its GO!Control security panel, allowing consumers to monitor and control their homes from any remote location and manage their home automation and security functions from the panel’s LCD touch-screen display, the Internet, or their PDA.
“2GIG has been a member of the Z-Wave Alliance since 2009, and we’re thrilled to be invited as a principal member,” said Todd Santiago, President for 2GIG Technologies. “We are fully committed to Z-Wave and developing a wide range of Z-Wave-enabled security systems with remote wireless control and energy management functions.”
Kwikset Rolls Out SmartCode Lever with Home Connect Technology
Kwikset has announced the availability of the Kwikset SmartCode Lever with Home Connect technology featuring Z-Wave. It lets homeowners create a complete home access control solution — both inside and out. The keyless, touchpad lever design — like its deadbolt predecessor — was developed for interoperability with home automation and security systems.
This SmartCode Lever is useful on both internal and external entryways. For many homes, the door between the garage and the home is single bored and cannot accommodate a deadbolt. The SmartCode Lever can be installed on a single-bored door to provide improved security and remote access that could not be achieved otherwise. Homeowners using this lever can lock their door from virtually anywhere using a Web-enabled cell phone or on the internet.
Monster Debuts Its Next Generation Universal Remotes
Monster now offers a line of three remote controls geared to meet the needs of every home entertainment consumer. The new remotes include the Evolution 55 (Model MCC AV55, SRP: $129.95), and Evolution 50 (Model MCC AV50, SRP: $99.95), as well as the Revolution 200 Home Theater Lighting Controller (Model MCC AVL200, SRP:$249.95).
All feature Monster “Game Controller-style” layout for single or two-handed and tabletop operation. Their beneficial one or two-handed operation provides the familiar feel of a game console controller and the “thumbstick” pad makes it easy for anyone to navigate the menu selections of virtually any A/V Component.
Verizon’s Getting into Home Connection Business
Verizon is planning to get into the connected home business, both with its own broadband customers and eventually with others. Ann Shaub, Director of Product Management at Verizon outlined Verizon’s vision for the connected home at the Digital Home Summit, which the company plans on launching in the first quarter of 2011.
Verizon’s connected home vision integrates entertainment/video, home control and monitoring, video conferencing, and other applications into unified and converged product accessible across the three screens (four if you count tablet computers). Verizon would allow a customer to access a menu from either their TV, PC, or smartphone and select the “sleep” option. That would trigger a variety of subscriber-defined actions, including turning off the lights in their home, turning the home HVAC system down, arming the security alarm, turning off the TV, and turning off the home water heater. An accompanying “wake” option could reverse these actions in the morning.
Shaub identified Z-Wave and MoCA as powering this connected home vision. Verizon sees an opportunity with its own broadband customers (including FiOS, DSL, and LTE), but also sees a bring-your-own-broadband option for non-Verizon broadband subscribers.
HomeSeer Unveils New Series-3 HomeTroller Home Automation Controller
HomeSeer Technologies has announced its latest Z-Wave home automation controller, the new HomeTroller S3. Like its predecessor (the S2), the new controller is a fanless, diskless unit that’s designed to integrate home lighting, appliances, security, climate and audio/video systems by combining the best attributes of the most popular automation systems available. Shipping now, the S3 builds on the success of the S2 and offers a faster processor, updated video support, software improvements and more technology interfaces.
The S3’s biggest performance boost comes from the addition of Intel’s energy efficient 1.6 GHz Atom processor. Other improvements include DVI video support, additional USB ports (for a total of five), front- and back-mounted audio ports and 2 Gigabit LAN ports. The unit’s HSProtect system has also been enhanced to provide file-level protection for much improved storage management of the internal flash drive.
The S3 is available in two configurations: Standard and PRO. The PRO version is shipped with all HomeSeer software plug-ins and add-ons, including the company’s popular HSTouch interface system. HSTouch allows all HomeSeer systems to be monitored and controlled by a variety of devices including iPhones, iPads, iPods, Windows and Linux devices. An Android client is also planned for release this fall.
All HomeSeer automation systems are designed to work seamlessly with industry standards and products from leading manufacturers such as Cooper, Schlage, Black & Decker, Lutron, Leviton, Russound, Microsoft, Centralite, DSC, Aprilaire, ACT, RCS, and others.
Home Control Market Penetration to Hit 20 Percent by 2014
A recent report by research firm Parks Associates forecasts the home controls market to grow from 6 percent to nearly 20 percent of U.S. households by 2014. To reach that number, however, industry players should focus on entertainment and energy management. The report cites low consumer awareness and a shortage of affordable installation services hinder widespread adoption.
With the entry of well-known players, including ADT, Best Buy, Radio Shack, and Schlage, the market has grown. But the report recommends that vendors focus their value proposition on specific, easily understood applications to build consumer awareness.
“Three applications will drive adoption of control systems over the next five years: energy management, entertainment systems and content control, and remote home self-monitoring,” says Bill Ablondi director, home systems research, Parks Associates. “Consumers see the value in these areas, which, once established, can serve as the base for expanded control systems in the home.”
According to the report, as entertainment controls for home theater and audio systems become more affordable, penetration will expand from 5 percent of U.S. households to 17 percent by 2014. These systems can then be expanded to integrate lighting, window treatments, and security controls. This strategy will help push penetration of control systems overall to almost 20 percent of households by 2014.
Embedded Automation Rolls Out mControl Enhancements
Embedded Automation Inc. has announced several enhancements to its latest release of mControl. The new release includes support for current generation Z-Wave thermostats, such as those from Wayne-Dalton and Interamatic. Other enhancements, such as support for instantaneous status messages from Z-Wave devices like Leviton Vizia switches and modules, also made it into this latest release.
The company has added support for additional Z-Wave adapters including those from Aeon and Tricklestar as well improvements to its existing MiCasa Verde’s Vera controller. With the updated support for the Vera driver, there are now two ways to access Z-Wave, directly using the mControl driver (via serial/USB connection) or by Vera.
Check out this step-by-step guide for more information on how to set up Z-Wave sensors using mControl.
Kwikset Introduces SmartCode Lever for Total Home Security
Kwikset has expanded its keyless, touchpad, electronic lock product offering with the introduction of the SmartCode Lever. You can lock your home office, wine cellar, storage room, or any other entryway and never again have to worry about carrying a key. To gain entry, simply input your personalized code.
SmartCode operates on four AA batteries so there is no hard wiring required. It also features SmartKey re-key technology with BumpGuard protection as the backup keyed entry system. It allows homeowners to re-key their lock anytime in a matter of seconds without removal from the door for improved security and convenience.
Just like Kwikset’s SmartCode Deadbolt, SmartCode Levers allow homeowners to create unique codes for each individual requiring access to the room or home. You can create temporary codes for the housekeeper or other visitors in the morning before leaving for work, and then disable those codes in the evening, making unauthorized access by temporary users virtually impossible.
SmartCode Levers fit all standard door preps without requiring new screw holes. The brightly-lit keypad also provides convenient access in low-light. The SmartCode Lever provides additional convenience and security via an automatic door locking feature with 30-second delay that can be activated or deactivated at your discretion. Kwikset provides a lifetime warranty on the mechanics and finish of the lock and there is a one year electronic warranty.
The SmartCode Lever introduction comes just two months after CES 2010, where the Kwikset SmartCode Lever with Home Connect Technology was previewed for the first time to the public. The Home Connect Technology product differs in that it is a wireless, ZigBee or Z-Wave enabled lock that can be locked or unlocked remotely via cell phone or the Internet from virtually anywhere, without any human interaction.
Z-Wave Evaluation Kit Now Available Through Digi-Key
The Z-Wave Evaluation Kit, which offers hardware and software needed to evaluate Z-Wave technology, is now available for purchase on Digi-Key’s U.S. and European websites.
The kit allows programmers to write host applications from a PC or embedded processor that communicates to the Z-Wave interface through the serial API. The APIs are limited but enable a developer to write simple control applications and become acquainted with the Z-Wave solution.
In addition, each kit includes ZM2120 (with SMA connector), Interface board with LED dimmer SW, ZM2120 (with SMA connector), Interface board with static controller SW, 9V power adapter, 6-cell (AA) battery holder with barrel plug adapter, serial cable RS232, swivel antenna, and access to Sigma support login for evaluation kit software and documentation.
“This Digi-Key custom-assembled kit will be a valuable tool for design engineers interested in developing a wireless sensor network for applications such as home automation and control,” said Dave Doherty, Digi-Key’s vice president of semiconductor product.
BuLogics Introduces Smart Grid Compatible Z-Wave Wireless Controller
BuLogics has introduced its Smart Grid compatible Z-Wave wireless controller. The controller bridges the wireless technology of Z-Wave home area networks to advanced metering infrastructures that use any wireless standard. It features a u-snap expansion module for connectivity to any wireless standard.
The Smart Grid controller supports ZigBee SE profile for Smart Grid metering. It can help you save money by reducing energy output during peak demand times and offers insight into consumer energy consumption patterns.
Smart Grid Home Controller is a networked appliance, offering advanced features of a complete Z-Wave home ecosystem including easy installation and setup. It lets you monitor and control your home energy consumption. It offers notification of utility demand change requests automatically via email or text message. It has a mobile web interface, but does not require internet access.