Annual home automation device shipments are expected to exceed 351 million, growing at a CAGR of 78%, according to ABI Research.
ZigBee dominated IEEE 802.15.4 and had the biggest share of node shipments, with 4.5 million, winning over proprietary protocols by a small margin.
"ZigBee is enjoying success in the home automation market because, as an open standard technology, multiple IC vendors are creating ZigBee chipsets," said ABI Senior Analyst Adarsh Krishnan. "Quite simply, open standard technologies are considered less risky and highly scalable when compared to the closed ecosystems of proprietary RF technologies."
The market research firm also sees the Z-Wave wireless communication protocol gaining traction in home automation market, offered by recent managed service initiatives to connect low-power home automation devices. Z-Wave also enjoys support from consumers, particularly in the DIY segment, because of the interoperability offered by a wide portfolio of products.
Smart devices using the Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) protocol are expected to show the highest growth in the category, reaching more than 133 million units by 2018.
ABI Practice Director Dan Shey explains, "Consumer electronics (CE), including smartphones, tablets, and laptops equipped with Bluetooth, are a major contributor to Bluetooth growth in home automation. Not only do these devices drive production economy of scale advantages but CE's are also growing role as a tool for managing and interacting with home automation systems."
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