A Comparative Analysis of Smart Home Automation Technologies in the UAE

The Smart Residence Automation business in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has been expanding at a immediate rate given that its dawn around the past many many years. The sector is turning out to be more and more mindful of the capabilities of owning a entire automation program whether at the scale of unique residences, palaces, genuine estate developments, and lodges. Several developments in Dubai and Abu Dhabi have currently been done with a pre-installed automation procedure. Numerous developments in regions like Victory Heights, Arabian Ranches, Sporting activities City, and Reem Island have also been crafted with infrastructure to help such technologies in the long run.

In standard kind, automation incorporates units that regulate Lights, Appliances, HVAC, Curtains and Multimedia. The marketplace in the UAE has not only started to notice the added benefits in terms of consolation, stability, and luxurious. But also in phrases of strength conserving and growing house price, therefore all these realizations will continue on to guide to a booming current market in the UAE.

As automation is to some degree of a new technology in the mainstream marketplace, one need to be aware of the countless variety of underlying technologies that join and allow for the conversation among a user and the Mild Dimming Programs or Air Conditioning Techniques. On the surface, these technologies could seem to guide to the similar functionality, but in the again-finish, they are diverse in most likely catastrophic means. This potential customers us to the rationale why we started off composing this write-up, that is, to drop mild on to the pros and drawbacks of the distinctive technologies (regardless of product or service or vendor) which are readily available in the UAE market place today.

Any automation system is composed of 2 higher-level elements, the controller, and the modules. The modules incorporate mild dimmers, relay switches, thermostats, motorized curtain management techniques, dispersed speakers..etc. which are to be managed by the household operator. The controller, is the coronary heart of the process from which signals are despatched to “Dim the lights” or “switch on the air conditioning”. The approach of conversation concerning the controller and the modules are the Automation Interaction Technologies which we want to tackle in this write-up. The process of communication can either be via wires or wi-fi and are normally in line with specific protocols or specifications of conversation. This write-up will check out and compare KNX, X10, Zigbee, En-Ocean, and Z-wave.

The conditions for comparison which we will examine are the following:

  1. Reliability of Communication: How trustworthy is the communication amongst the Controller and the Modules? When a information is despatched to a module, the technique have to assure the message’s arrival and confirmation of receipt. Scoring well in this requirements is very crucial to ensure that even less than instances of wired or wireless interference messages are resent until finally verified by the acquiring module. Not all protocols comply with this need.
  2. Security of Conversation: The protocol will have to promise that a 3rd celebration cannot infiltrate an existing technique and function it with unauthorized entry. The success of a hacker getting into a parking ton of a hotel and turning all its lights off is disastrous.
  3. Cost
  4. Capabilities and Abilities: It is significant that automation systems go beyond just controlling personal modules and have the capacity to integrate with other programs most typically entertainment given that that is an area of higher use of any home operator. Illustration: Quick Integration with Multi-space Audio Systems, Multi-area multimedia distribution units (Movies, Video clips, Photos, New music)…and so on.
  5. Expense Safety: It is significant to make sure that put in Controller or Modules can be conveniently changed in the long term. Take into consideration getting mounted a method that has some elements are unsuccessful immediately after 5 many years, and at the similar time, the firm which set up it turned bankrupt. The dwelling proprietor would be remaining with no decision but to wholly revamp the total electrical technique in the home which would charge more in time, labor, and tools that what was initially paid for the automation system. Having a process that is standardized suggests that any other company can guidance it or switch selected components with distinctive products, maybe from distinct distributors, in purchase to ensure ongoing procedure.
  6. Interoperability: This conditions refers to the functionality of the Controller to speak to several Modules from diverse makers. This will be certain that a process is produced up with Lights, HVAC, Curtains, Appliances, and Multimedia Handle Modules are bought from distinct companies which are the ideal or most specialised in people fields. This makes sure that a technique has the greatest-in course Modules for every specific purpose. It is not rational that the best company of mild dimmers is also the greatest company of curtain command devices, or audio systems. Some interaction protocols are closed or proprietary, so forcing the shopper to order every thing from a solitary producer. This criteria also overlaps with the Investment Defense Criteria because obtaining an interoperable method will give future adaptability to very easily change Modules even if the business which put in them has closed down.

The remainder of this document will handle every communication technology dependent on the earlier mentioned conditions.


KNX is an international conventional of conversation usually installed in wired twisted pair environments. KNX was intended in 1990 and was produced as a quite strong protocol to be used in industrial automation applications. The protocols reliability can’t be questioned since it implements quite a few OSI conversation levels and is really elaborate. KNX is also managed by the KNX association and any enterprise ordinarily spends 1000’s of dirhams on their personnel to go through education in get to fully grasp the inner workings of the process. KNX is a complicated protocol by mother nature, and was made extensive just before the “sensible property” principle was born, thus the hardware that has the ability to assist the complexity of KNX is high-priced not only to engineer, but also to manufacture and therefore the hopes for this technology to develop into more affordable than its existing choices is futile.

KNX has and is a preferred choice for motels due to the fact 2006 and has been deployed in numerous developments this sort of as the Shangri-la in Dubai, Rotana Resorts in the Marina, Fairmont, Movenpick to identify a number of. KNX is also staying specified by quite a few authentic estate consultants for major developments in the Abu Dhabi Reem Island and Yas Island.

  1. Dependability of Communication: Indeed
  2. Protection of Communication: Sure
  3. Price: No
  4. Options and Capabilities: No. KNX has been much more targeted at the very simple facility of automation and typically fits in lodge environments where by customization and multimedia integration is not demanded.
  5. Expense Protection: Yes
  6. Interoperability: Indeed


X10 is an international open up conventional developed in 1975 by Pico Electronics of Scotland, in buy to permit distant control of residence gadgets and appliances. It largely uses the 220Vpower line wiring for sending messages between the Controller and the Modules (Lights, HVAC…and many others).

X10 has only receyved some level of popularity several years back when automation engineering started out staying launched in the UAE. And was usually put in in small villa task then was bit by bit discontinued due to its trustworthiness troubles.

  1. Reliability of Conversation: No. Since it is susceptible to interference from a number of resources like transformers, motors usually uncovered in TVs, washing devices, lovers…and so on. Also, messages from Controller to Modules are by no means acknowledged so there is no 2-way communication.
  2. Security of Interaction: No. If a 3rd bash can faucet into the powerline of a household, messages can very easily be sent to command whatsoever the 3rd party wishes.
  3. Value: Sure
  4. Attributes and Abilities: Yes. This know-how can quickly be integrated into Laptop based mostly units and many solutions are readily available to give attribute abundant capabilities for residential apps.
  5. Financial investment Security: Sure
  6. Interoperability: Yes


ZigBee is an open up wireless network communication protocol centered on the IEEE specification IEEE 802.15.4, which permits the Controller to talk with its Modules by way of Radio Frequency. The standard is a progress of the ZigBee Alliance, which was launched in the close of 2002. It is an sector alliance of additional than 230 enterprises who choose up the throughout the world enhancement of this engineering. The first ZigBee products and solutions arrived on the marketplace in the beginning of 2005. Simply because Zigbee standardises only the decrease protocol layers (radio layer), the diverse suppliers have outlined their have increased software layers. As a consequence ZigBee units of different suppliers are not appropriate with just about every other.

  1. Reliability of Conversation: Yes. A wireless mesh network is made and guarantees various route routing to each individual module which translates to prolonged reach, and substantial trustworthiness in scenario of interference or even in case of in-route product failure.
  2. Protection of Communication: No. Zigbee works by using weak hashing algorithms and has been researched to be penetrable. Penetration is not simple but software package equipment this kind of as “Killerbee” exist and can allow for any individual with little Linux and scripting knowledge to hack into an current Zigbee community.
  3. Rate: No
  4. Attributes and Capabilities: Of course
  5. Investment decision Security: Of course
  6. Interoperability: No


EnOcean is a wireless radio frequency dependent, vitality harvesting technology used mostly in constructing automation techniques. It is not set out for global, European or national standardization on the other hand, EnOcean GmbH is supplying its technologies and licenses for the patented characteristics under license in just the EnOcean Alliance framework. The strategy was formulated to allow batteryless sensors and switches for creating automation. Which is questionable in conditions of electrical power preserving because existing solutions can take in as minimal as 500W for each 60 storey tower in automation units.

EnOcean centered technologies have been put in in some major jobs this kind of as the Abu Dhabi Central Market place, the Dubai Money Center…and many others.

  1. Reliability of Conversation: No, En-Ocean does not provide 2-way interaction amongst the Controller and its Modules. Also the Controller is at a star community with the Modules and there is no wireless meshing, this one-to-a single signal mapping can greatly are unsuccessful in situations of significant interference.
  2. Security of Interaction: Sure
  3. Selling price: No, En-Ocean costs are far more aligned with KNX.
  4. Capabilities and Abilities: No. Supported but not nonetheless witnessed in the marketplace.
  5. Investment Security: Indeed
  6. Interoperability: Indeed


Amongst all the previously mentioned protocols, Z-wave ranks the greatest so far. The toughness of Z-wave lies in the large selection of different products from various manufacturers as properly as the really sturdy, 2-way, meshed, and secured wireless conversation. Z-wave chips also take in a 10mW at peak and are reduced charge in contrast to all other alternate options. Why? mainly because Z-wave has been originally designed for household purposes.

Z-wave is considered as the subsequent technology of Sensible House Technological know-how and product lines have started out to emerge from big players these as Honeywell and Schneider Electrical. This technologies is not only function total, trusted and safe, but will be made available at aggressive charges and financial commitment defense for assignments of any size setting up with person villas all the way to huge true estate towers. As of nowadays, Z-wave has been deployed in a lot of villas in the UAE at an person scale. Z-wave is also starting off to make its way by way of a lot of of the massive tenders for developments during the Emirates.

  1. Trustworthiness of Interaction: Yes
  2. Safety of Conversation: Indeed
  3. Cost: Sure
  4. Functions and Abilities: Sure
  5. Financial investment Safety: Sure
  6. Interoperability: Certainly

Annisa Rizka

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