I really like the idea of home automation, but the thought of running wires through my home is not appealing at all. That makes the only real option for me and other people who feel the same way with wireless networking options for home automation like ZigBee.
NEC has announced the availability of a new ZigBee Pro evaluation kit for smart energy and home area network applications. The evaluation kit includes a low-power IEEE 802.15.4 radio with an NEC 16-bit 78K0R/KE3 microcontroller with 17DMIPS performance and 256KB of flash memory.
The evaluation kit also includes three pre-programmed ZigBee Pro Nodes each with a NEC Electronics 78K0R/KE3 MCU, 802.15.4 radio, debug board with USB and RS232 interfaces and a breadboard area for prototyping. The kit will ship in November for $250.