Differences Between Zigbee and Z-wave Smart Switches


For practical reasons, a smart switch is an essential item that should be purchased by those who want to turn their home into a smart home. That said, there are those who experience confusion when deciding which type of smart switch to select.

Our company, Smart Switch City Singapore, offers professional smart switch installation services at affordable prices. To help you add innovative products to your home, we have prepared this article in which we will specifically talk about the differences between Zigbee and Z-wave smart switches, two devices with highly similar protocol standards.

Zigbee Switches vs. Z-Wave Switches


1. Zigbee Is An Open Standard

Zigbee uses an open standard for their smart products while Z-Wave makes use of a proprietary standard owned by Silicon Labs. The openness of Zigbee helps achieve greater expansion, a strength that is also a weakness when it comes to securing compatibility. This is because anyone can access the Zigbee standard and change it accordingly.

2. Zigbee Can Connect More Devices


Both Z-Wave and Zigbee smart switches communicate through a network system, transferring the signal from one device to another until it reaches the hub. However, a Z-Wave switch only allows a maximum of four “hops” from one device to another until it reaches the hub while Zigbee switches allow as many hops as possible until the hub is reached.

Zigbee and Z-wave are ideal for home automation as well as commercial and office use. That said, smart light switches made by Z-Wave can connect only up to 232 devices. In contrast, Zigbee switches can connect up to approximately 65,000 devices,

3. Z-Wave Switches Have A Wider Network Reach


Although smart home switches by Z-Wave can connect much fewer devices than Zigbee switches, it has a much wider network reach. In fact, these switches can connect devices up to 100 meters whereas Zigbee switches have a much narrower range of 10-75 meters, a common size of most residential spaces.

4. Z-Wave Devices Are More Unified


Zigbee provides communication protocols for automation and other uses such as energy management and home hospital care. Even so, it is often difficult for Zigbee devices with differing protocols to properly communicate with each other. In the case of Z-Wave however, such difficulties are less common especially since most Z-Wave devices can communicate with one another even if they have differing protocols. Z-Wave switches also have unique identifiers so they can be easily identified when connecting to a network.

5. Zigbee Switches Consume Less Energy

Zigbee is oriented towards low energy-consuming applications. Moreover, devices sold by this brand such as smart switches and smart bulbs can be used up to 6 months simply with the use of two normal alkaline batteries.

6. Z-Wave Switches Experience Less Congestion

Zigbee smart switches work by using the ISM band specifically 868 MHz in Europe, 915 MHz in the United States, and 2.4 GHz worldwide. This ensures that they can connect to the network over a long range. On the other hand, it also means that they are prone to slowing down if multiple devices are connected.

In contrast, Z-Wave switches operate at varying radio frequencies depending on what country they are produced for. In Europe, they operate at bands of 868.40, 868.42, and 869.85. As for those in the United States, they operate at bands of 908.4, 908.42, and 916. As a result, these switches are less likely to experience congestion whenever multiple devices are connected unlike WiFi/Bluetooth smart switches.

Which Smart Switch Should I Install?


At this point, we know that both Z-Wave and Zigbee smart switches have their own advantages and disadvantages. In order to determine which of these smart switches you should install, be sure to take note of the following:

How Many Devices Need To Be Integrated Into The Network

If you only need to connect a few smart devices, then installing Zigbee switches may be enough. However, if you require the use of multiple smart devices, then it might be better to install Z-Wave switches.

The Distance Between Your Devices

If you intend to use smart devices that are within close proximity to one another, we recommend that you install smart switches made by Zigbee. On the other hand, if the devices you are planning to use are quite far from each other, installing Z-Wave smart switches might be the better option.


Zigbee and Z-Wave are communication protocols used by smart switches from the same brands. Although they have similar functions, Zigbee and Z-Wave smart switches provide their own advantages and disadvantages. For instance, Zigbee smart switches use an open standard and can connect multiple devices. Moreover, they consume less energy. Z-Wave smart switches on the other hand have a wider network reach, are more unified, and are less likely to experience congestion. Once you have decided which switch is best for your needs, contact Smart Switch City Singapore to install it for you.

Smart Switch City Singapore specializes in providing professional and reliable smart switch installation services. With a wide range of smart switch products and brands, customers will get choose the most suitable smart switch according to their needs. Our customer service support team is well-trained to provide practical recommendations and attend to your queries swiftly. To provide holistic service excellence to our customers, we have a team of highly experienced electricians to perform smart switch installation services. You may wish to read through our blogs and smart switch buying guide to learn more about the things you should take note of before installing smart switches. Do not hesitate to WhatsApp us at +65 8241 0032 if you have any queries on smart switches and we will be happy to assist!