What Technology?

There are many different methods which allow you to remotely control your home’s lighting, appliances, security system, and other consumer electronics. The table below shows the most popular remote technologies along with their advantages and disadvantages.

The Main Players

BrandInsteonZ-WaveWi-FiBluetooth802.15.4/Zigbee
Maximum Theoretical Network SizeUnlimited2322569256
Maximum Practical Network Size1000's30-35Dozens9Dozens
Physical Layer 1RFRFRFRFRF
Physical Layer 1 Frequency915MHz915MHz2.4GHz2.4GHz915MHz or 2.4GHz
Physical Layer 2Powerline----
Physical Layer 2 Frequency132KHz----
Mesh EnrollmentAutomaticProceduralProceduralProceduralProcedural
Operate without HubYes----
Cost$$$$$$$$$
Compatibility Classes (Less is More)1>1Many3>9
Forward & Backward CompatibleYes----
Scenes without DelayYes----
Message PropagationSimulcastRoutedRoutedTheoreticalRouted
Network ConfigurationFull MeshPartial MeshStarStarStar + Mesh
Controller FailureRemote Access FailureComplete Network FailureComplete Network FailureComplete Network FailureComplete Network Failure
Mobile DevicesAutomaticBreakdownAutomaticAutomaticBreakdown
Initial ProductsFully SupportedObsoleteJust launchedJust launchedObsolete
Physical InteroperabilityYesYesYesYesNot Assured
Brand InteroperabilityYesNot AssuredWith Software/SDKWith Software/SDKLimited
Messages AcknowledgedYesYesYesYesYes
Unique AddressingYes---Not Enforced
Error DetectionYesYesYesYesYes
Error CorrectionYesYesYesYesYes
Collision AvoidanceYesYesYesYesYes