More and more companies are adding some form of wireless communications to their products. Some are motivated by fiscal factors like reducing the amount of copper cable they use. Others are motivated by market factors that demand the latest and coolest technology. Whatever the reason, the decision to use wireless communications can have a dramatic impact on the success of a product. This paper explains three key factors which impact the operation of a wireless communication system: reliability, security, and performance. Reliability refers to topics of packet error rate, error correction coding, retransmission mechanisms and frequency planning. Security includes topics like encryption and access control. Performance encompasses topics such as bandwidth, data rate, latency, and packet prioritization (quality of service) techniques.