The brand-new Zigbee Direct 1.0 standard has just been released and is now open for certification. Certification testing at accredited test houses involves Golden Units (GUs), which are leading reference implementations that set the benchmark in terms of interoperability, reliability and performance. GUs are utilized to exercise the required test cases for subsequent third-party implementations, the Devices under Test (DUTs).
ubisys supplies two types of GUs: First, the Zigbee Virtual Device (ZVD), which is a software component that runs on virtually any hardware that supports Bluetooth, e.g. smart phones, tablets, speakers, and computers; and, another one, the Zigbee Direct Device (ZDD), which runs on dual-mode concurrent IEEE 802.15.4 (native Zigbee) and Bluetooth devices, which act as a seamless access-point for ZVDs into the Zigbee mesh network. Both GUs support all mandatory and all optional features that Zigbee Direct 1.0 defines. And this in all possible network roles for both device types: End-device, router, or trust center in a universal binary that is runtime configurable and fully scriptable for automated testing. Both implementations are built on ubisys’s industry-leading Compact7B™ Zigbee stack, which also supports all the exciting new Zigbee 2023 (R23) features.
“Certification testing is the bedrock of the success of any open standard protocol and Zigbee Direct 1.0 is no different,” said Jon Harros, Head of Certification and Testing, Connectivity Standards Alliance. “The Golden Unit status for ubisys speaks to their ability to handle all facets of getting devices through rigorous test cases presenting real-world challenges for device integrity, security and overall compatibility within the ecosystem. We’re very pleased to have ubisys achieve this significant status as a very integral part to the success of the Zigbee Direct 1.0 rollout.”
As a silicon-vendor independent stack supplier, ubisys could choose from a range of potential platforms from different vendors and selected the Qorvo QPG7015MDK development kit, a combination of a Raspberry Pi single-board computer and the QPG7015M. This multi-channel, multi-mode, multi-stack system-on-chip has proven to be a perfect fit.
Arasch Honarbacht, CEO of ubisys, explains why: “Qorvo’s ConcurrentConnect™ technology in the QPG7015M is truly amazing and industry leading. It is able to run Zigbee, Bluetooth and Thread concurrently on a single chip, even on different channels. It has been specifically designed and optimized for these advanced multi-protocol use cases. I am not aware of any other chip that can do it this well. Built on top of a powerful Linux environment this platform is fun to work with and almost impossible to push to its limits. Running a new stack binary, debugging it, gathering an abundance of over-the-air and stack debug trace logs – and doing this all remotely across the Atlantic – has been super easy and convenient. Of course, when the stack runs on a 64-bit quad-core 1.5GHz processor with endless memory and gigabit ethernet developers might be tempted to work less hard on an optimal solution. This is why we also ran the same codebase on the QPG6095 SoC with 512KB flash and 64KB RAM in parallel to make sure our implementation remains as highly optimized and fit for purpose as our customers expect it to be. This has proven to be the right decision, time and again. Thanks to Qorvo, not only for their intriguing hardware, but also for their timely first-rate support.”
Tim Allemeersch, Sr. Manager of Applications Engineering for Connectivity Systems at Qorvo, says, “We are thrilled that the combination of ubisys software components and the QPG7015M was selected as a Golden Unit for the new Zigbee Direct 1.0 standard. This will simplify and reduce risk for our customers who integrate this functionality into their products. The inclusion of ubisys software in Qorvo’s development kits, provides our customers with a stable, user-friendly, performance optimized, standards compatible and interoperable solution. We congratulate ubisys for their constant leadership and contribution in the Alliance, from being the first Zigbee 3.0 certified SW stack to being awarded the Zigbee Direct 1.0 Golden Unit status. It’s great to see the solution leveraging Qorvo’s leading ConcurrentConnect™ technology, seamlessly combining Zigbee and Bluetooth™ Low Energy to deliver Zigbee Direct with a single radio IC, saving board space and shortening time to market. We look forward to new Zigbee Direct 1.0 features launching in the market.”