Enhanced Z-Wave platform features longer range, lower power

Silicon Labs announced the latest members of its Z-Wave 700 family, building on its wireless Gecko MCU to offer longer range at lower power. An enhanced radio integrates a region-agnostic SAW filter, enabling developers to use the new module in designs targeting worldwide distribution.

Based on the SiLabs ARM Cortex-M4-based wireless Gecko family, the module requires 3x less current than earlier family members and features a sleep mode consuming less than 1 µA. The enhanced platform further reduces power by taking advantage of its 32-bit core to support a real-time operating system, leverage the RTOS's event-driven architecture to eliminate polling required in the earlier devices. Instead, the new platform is designed to persist in sleep mode, waking only long enough to handle Z-Wave operations.


Silicon Labs Z-Wave 700 Wireless Starter Kit (Source: Silicon Labs)

To help speed time to market, the new platform features a software building block approach, using precertified building blocks to reduce certification delays. SiLabs claims the use of precertified building blocks addresses 90% of the work required to complete certification. Along with built-in over-the-air (OTA) update functionality and Z-Wave S2 security, the platform incorporates SiLabs' SmartStart, enabling users to complete secure inclusion in less than one second, according to the company.

Already shipping to select members of the Z-Wave Alliance, the Silicon Labs Z-Wave 700 platform will be in product in the first half of 2019 as a modem SoC, SiP module, and starter kit.

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