Joe Roberts of Nortek Security and Control predicts industry trends

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Monday, April 1, 2019

CARLSBAD, Calif.—The countdown to ISC West 2019 is in full force. Industry professionals are predicting trends that will be prevalent on the showroom floor as well as giving little hints as to what their specific brand will introduce at the show. Soon the world will meet products and services never before seen in the security industry.

Security Systems News spoke with Joe Roberts, executive VP of marketing and innovation, Nortek Security & Control, about upcoming trends he expects to see at the show. And, he gave us an exclusive sneak peek as to what Nortek is showcasing in Vegas in just one week! 

There are some general trends sweeping across the security industry as a whole that will play into the trends seen at ISC West:

Convergence between security control and entertainment – “Security is no longer the days of pure intrusion, obviously, and that’s been going on for a while,” Roberts said. “Integration is important but the [user] experience … users are expecting an experience that is really delightful.” 

Peace of mind – Nortek takes pride in being involved with their integrator partners and their customers, which has afforded them to discover people are really looking for peace of mind. 

“People describe this in different ways,” Roberts explained. “Ultimately they’ve made an investment in property and they don’t want to have a system that tells them when someone broke in; they want to have a system that will protect them from that.” 

Nortek is delivering peace of mind by continuing to build their 2GIG brand of products to not only deliver peace of mind but demonstrate protection via products, technology and messaging. Roberts told SSN that substantial investments have been made into the software that powers 2GIG products, enabling predictive analytics. 

“When people call about the ‘alarm industry,’ it kind of gives me the ‘willies’ because that is so ‘rear view mirror,’ and what we’re really looking at is the windshield,” he said. When he tries to explain predictive analytics to people, it’s almost as if they are dismissive, saying things like, “yeah, I know…I know.” Roberts admitted that some folks absolutely “get it,” and complimented their end users for anticipating customer wants and needs.

Video and voice – Piggybacking off the concept of predictive analytics is the idea that video and voice as an overall solution provides such capabilities. “Video and voice give the ability of interacting with the system that is more delightful and intuitive, and allows for true system personalization,” Roberts said. 

Based on these trends and what Roberts saw at CES, he predicts Alexa/Google will continue to push the envelope with voice integrations and get more and more robust. Of course, with that comes privacy concerns. “It’s a balancing act to provide privacy with capabilities,” explained Roberts. “What we’re looking to do is make sure your video is not seen by anyone, sensors are connected just to your system and your system only, and use encryption to deliver peace of mind.” 

Nortek Security & Control is adding personalization and privacy into its platform and across multiple products with face recognition and voice with natural language.

“When we talk about the personalization experience with facial recognition, I’ve described it to people using words, and they will smile and nod, and then you show it…literally when I walk into my home it says, ‘Welcome Home Joe,’ which I feel good about already because it [the system] already knows who I am. My system disarms. When I sit down, my lights are on the lighting scene that I want and the climate is set to my comfort level. Any other automation, for example, shades, can be customized for each individual. This is the level of personalization we’re talking about.”