Z-Wave Alliance extends range with new specification

The Z-Wave Alliance has announced its new Z-Wave Long Range (Z-Wave LR) specification, providing significantly extended wireless range beyond the interior of the home.

Z-Wave LR is engineered to support robust networks while extending Z-Wave connectivity beyond the interior boundaries of the home to improve wireless transmission range of peripheral Z-Wave devices such as door locks, garage door sensors, gate access solutions, and more.

As the average number of installed smart home devices continues to increase, so too does the strain on the network. To support the upward trend in the number of sensor and IoT devices within homes and MDU environments, Z-Wave LR also increases scalability on a single smart home network to over 2000 nodes, a 10x increase from Z-Wave.

Developed and managed by the new Z-Wave Alliance Technical & Certifications workgroup, Z-Wave LR represents a new era of Z-Wave connectivity, bringing more connectivity options for smart homes, multi-dwelling units and hospitality use cases.

The new Z-Wave LR specification eliminates the need to use Z-Wave repeaters to strengthen and extend coverage, which is what was required previously. The Z-Wave LR increases the transmission range found in Z-Wave, unlocking new potential for Z-Wave networks. 

With dynamic power control to optimise operation, Z-Wave LR increases typical sensor use cases on a coin cell battery by up to ten years. 

As with all certified Z-Wave devices, Z-Wave LR devices can be installed into any Z-Wave network and feature interoperability and backwards compatibility with any previously installed Z-Wave device. 

The new specification will be managed and certified under the Z-Wave Plus V2 certification programme, which currently mandates the inclusion of the enhance S2 security framework as well as SmartStart, a setup feature that enables true plug and play for the consumer smart home. 

“The Z-Wave LR specification is the first of many technical developments to come from within the new Alliance standards development organisational structure,” said Mitchell Klein, executive director, Z-Wave Alliance.

“As smart home networks continue to grow, mature, and add more complex devices, there is a need for more robust technology to support them. With Z-Wave LR, we are building upon Z-Wave’s legacy of strong networks by supporting more devices in a home or building with increased node counts and greater range. 

“It’s more important than ever that IoT devices live on strong, reliable networks, and we’re excited to support this with the latest Z-Wave specification.”