Wireless Technologies for IoT

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Brief overview of wireless technologies used in IoT systems.

Categorization by range

Proximity (0-10 cm)

  • Near Field Communication (NFC)
  • Radio Frequency Identification (RFID)

Wireless Personal Area Network (WPAN) (0-10m/100m)

  • Bluetooth 802.15.1
  • Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE)
  • Zigbee
  • 6LoWPAN
  • Thread
  • Z-Wave
  • WirelessHART
  • MIWI
  • ISA100.a

Wireless Local Area Network (WLAN) (0-100m)

  • Wifi 802.11
  • WiFi 802.11ah

Wireless Wide Area Networks (WWAN)(>100m)

  • Sigfox - low throughput
  • LoRa/LoraWAN
  • DASH7
  • Cellular technologies (2G, 3G, 4G, 5G, LTE, NB IOT)


Comparison of WPAN Technologies
Protocol ZigBee Z-Wave Thread
Number of Devices 256
Frequency Band 868/915 and 2.4GHz 800-900 MHz 2.4 GHz
Network topology Star and mesh type Star and mesh type
Data Rate up to 250 Kbps Example
Modulation technique BPSK, OQPSK Example
Typical distance coverage 10 to 30 meters 90/24 m (outdoor/indoor)
Power consumption 0.39 Watt Example
Transmit power(nominal) -25dBm to 0 dBm Example
Data protection using CRC 16 bit CRC Example
Applications Home automation Example

ZigBee Manufacturers:Freescale, Ember, Texas Instruments (CC2530,CC2531), Marvell, ATMEL, Microchip