Wireless / Fieldbus

State of Wireless Networking

The Results from a 2013 Survey of 150 Industrial Networking Readers Provide Insight into Wireless Options

By Jim Montague

A survey of more than 150 readers of sister-publication Industrial Networking in February 2013 found that:

Nearly 57% of respondents presently have wireless in their applications and facilities, while 43.2% do not use wireless. Of the 57% with wireless Ethernet, the most common types employed are:

Wireless HART 31.6%
802.11b/g 28.6%
WiFi (802.11n) 9.2%
Proprietary protocol 9.2%
802.11a 5.1%
ZigBee (802.15.4) 1%

Meanwhile, 47.5% of respondents have approved projects to deploy wireless during the next year, but 52.5% have not. Of the 47.5% of respondents who plan to deploy wireless, the most popular types are:

Wireless HART 35.8%
802.11b/g 16.1%
WiFI (802.11n) 14.8%
ZigBee (802.15.4) 4.9%
Proprietary protocol 6.2%
802.11a 2.5%

In addition, respondents' most common uses or intended uses for wireless are:

Monitoring 59.7%
Control 27.7%
Alerts/alarms 12.6%

Also, respondents needed varying cycle times from their wireless devices, including:

1 second or slower 52.8%
500-999 msec  20.8%
100-499 msec 15.2%
Faster than 100 msec 11.2%