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Difference between Bluetooth mesh and Zigbee mesh

This page compares BLE mesh vs Zigbee mesh and mentions difference between Bluetooth mesh and Zigbee mesh technologies with respect to various parameters.

Introduction: The network topologies used by wireless/wired system are categorized in to point to point, point to multi-point and multi-point to multi-point. Based on these topologies, devices or nodes communicate for data transfer or other uses. Both bluetooth mesh and zigbee mesh follows mesh topology and hence data can be exchanged with any device in the coverage range. If receiving node is not within the coverage range of the sending node, the data can be relayed or routed until it reaches the destination device or node. Both the BLE mesh and zigbee following different relay/routing techniques.

Bluetooth mesh standard specifications have been published in 2017 by Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG). It supports all the BLE versions back to 4.0. The BLE mesh has been designed to support higher range and more IoT applications. The devices in BLE mesh network are known as nodes. These nodes do not connect with each other unlike traditional BLE (bluetooth low energy) devices. They use advertising and scanning states in order to relay messages to each other. There are different types of nodes in BLE mesh based on their functions in the network viz. relay node, low power node, friend node and proxy node.

Zigbee mesh network specifications are defined in IEEE 802.15.4-2003 standard. The standard defines PHY and MAC layers and radio frequency channels to be used. The network consists of coordinators, routers and end devices. Zigbee mesh supports higher coverage range and operates in different frequency bands viz. 2.4 GHz, 868 MHz and 915 MHz. It supports data rates up to 250 Kbps.

Difference between BLE mesh and Zigbee mesh

Following table mentions comparative difference between BLE mesh and Zigbee mesh technologies.

Parameters Bluetooth mesh Zigbee mesh
Specification Published by Bluetooth SIG Published by IEEE under 802.15.4-2003 standard
Frequency 2.4 GHz 868 MHz, 900-928 MHz and 2.4 GHz
Coverage range 10 to 100 m 3.2 Km or less for each hop during transmission
Data rate 250 Kbps 20 Kbps, 40 Kbps, 250 Kbps
Number of nodes per network 32767 65000
Routing Managed flooding Full routing
Complexity High Low
Power consumption Medium Very low
Network devices Different types of nodes e.g. relay node, low power node, friend node and proxy node Coordinator, Router and End Devices
Security Uses AES-CCM with 128-bit size keys Uses AES encryption
Applications or use cases Monitor and control apps such as lighting etc. Home automation and other IoT applications
References Bluetooth mesh technology >> Zigbee mesh network tutorial >>


Bluetooth Tutorial  BLE Tutorial  Frequency  PHY Layer  MAC layer  Stack  Power classes  Security  products  versions  Bluetooth Vs BLE 

zigbee mesh tutorial related links

what is zigbee   Zigbee mesh tutorial   Zigbee Protocol  Zigbee PHY   Zigbee frame   Zigbee MAC  Zigbee bands  RF4CE   6LoWPAN   AODV protocol  Zigbee Products  Zigbee Gadgets   Zigbee Switch   Zigbee Sensor   Zigbee USB Dongle   Zigbee Smart Meter  Zigbee to Ethernet  

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