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home automation

Home automation company goes public

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Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Home automation provider Control4 had a successful IPO on Friday Aug. 2. The company offered 4,000,000 shares of its common stock for $16 per share. The shares began trading on the NASDAQ market.

The share price quickly climbed to $20.70 in what Business Insider called a “stellar IPO. … That gives the 10-year-old, Salt Lake City, Utah, company a valuation of about $446 million. Not bad considering it had 2012 revenues of $109.5 million and posted a loss from operations every year since 2008.”

The stock closed at $21.06 on Tuesday, Aug. 6.

One winner in the deal, Business Insider pointed out, is Cisco, which made an undisclosed $20 million investment in the company in 2011.

Business insider says that Cisco “also signed on to sell a Cisco-branded version of its products and to help Control4 develop new products. … Control4 is part of Cisco's big vision of a brand new tech market called the Internet of Things (although Cisco prefers the term the Internet of Everything). IoT refers to putting all the inanimate objects in your home, office and city on the Internet and making them interactive."

And speaking of the Internet of Things, we had a great panel discussion at TechSec last year about that touched on that topic, and we’ll be doing more on it this year. We’re putting the program together right now. Look for details around ASIS time.

 

Cox expanding its home security/home automation reach

By the end of 2012, the cable company plans to offer Cox Home Security in seven states
 - 
10/24/2012

ATLANTA—After a successful trial of its home security/home automation offering in Arizona, Cox Communications is now expanding Cox Home Security to six other states.

Home sweet home

 - 
Wednesday, November 9, 2016

There has been a lot of good news coming out lately on the state of residential security, which over the past few years has been bolstered by interactive and connected services, home automation, DIY and the emergence of mobile everything.

Technavio recently released a report on the residential security market, which shows that from 2016 to 2020 the global market for residential security will grow at a 7.34 percent CAGR—from $21.93 billion to $31.25 billion. The North American market will rise to about $15 billion in 2020, up from $12.51 billion in 2016, at a CAGR of 4.56 percent.

On the heals of that research, a report on home automation from Zion Research shows that the global home automation market was valued at around $5.0 billion in 2014 and is expected to reach $21.0 billion in 2020, growing at a CAGR of around 25 percent between 2015 and 2020.

Interestingly, the home automation market was dominated by North America, which accounted for about 40 percent of the total market in 2014. North America is followed by Europe and Asia Pacific, with Europe expected to witness robust growth in home automation systems market owing to strong demand from Germany, UK and France, according to the report.

The report also noted that the wireless system management segment dominated the home automation market in 2014, accounting for more than 40 percent of the overall market in 2014. With increasing use of products enabled with Wi-Fi technology, demand for wireless system management is expected to go up, the report said.

From my conversations with residential dealers, many are taking advantage of these new opportunities, providing scalable smart home packages that provide their customers with the kind of home automation customization and interactive services they are clamoring for, while increasing the potential RMR for an account.

Dealers are also finding that the more customers interact with their security and home automation systems, the more likely they are to stay a customer and add on services in the future. In addition to providing greater control over their security, surveillance, lighting and heating systems, homeowners are realizing energy savings, reduction in insurance costs, and overall greater peace of mind as a result of this smart home revolution. 

As the studies mentioned above bear out, the potential within residential security is limitless.

 

 

 

Comcast and Alarm.com reportedly in talks to acquire Icontrol

Alarm.com could win ADT business if deal goes through
 - 
06/15/2016

REDWOOD CITY, Calif.—Interactive services platform provider Alarm.com and cable giant Comcast are in talks to acquire platform provider Icontrol Networks, according to several sources who spoke to Security Systems News, and published reports.

Smart home mania or madness?

 - 
Wednesday, June 1, 2016

With the flood of new smart home products hitting the market these days, one of the things I look forward to each day is checking my Google Alerts to see what new surprises this wild west of home automation and connectivity is bringing us now.

From smart toasters that tell you when your toast is ready, or if you like, that toasts the past night’s sports scores right onto the bread for you, to a smart-fridge that tells you when you need more milk, the number and volume of new smart home products hitting the market today is staggering. And, to say the least, a little befuddling, like the smart grill that tells you when your steak needs to be flipped, or the smart coffee maker that texts you when your coffee is ready, or … brace yourself … the smart tampon that reminds you when it is time for a change—huh?

As one of my SSN colleagues pointed out, you have to wonder if consumer interest and demand is driving this innovation or if companies are just throwing stuff at the wall to see what sticks. We both agree that more often than not, it is the latter.

The latest innovation, and I have to say I am surprised it has taken this long, is the smart home robot named ZenBo, which is basically Amazon Echo’s Alexa on wheels. ZenBo, and other robots like it that will surely flood the market in the coming months, can turn on your lights, walk you through a recipe, remind you to take your medicine or even read a bedtime story to your kids, if that idea doesn’t freak you out as much as it does me.

For every convenience that a product like ZenBo can provide to a family, you have to wonder if we haven’t flipped open the lid on Pandora’s box. When will the madness end, and how are dealers to make sense of all of these new products hitting the market?

For every interesting new product I read about, like the smart go-cart that Tony Fadell, co-creator of Nest, is designing to allow parents to geofence where their kids will be able to drive, there are five to 10 other new products that make you shake your head.

When it comes to sorting through all of this and figuring out what is viable and what is just, hmm, let’s say—insane—it is important for dealers to ask themselves: Will my customers be interested in this or are these companies creating a problem where there isn’t one just to sell another clever smart home product?

 

Global home automation market to hit $78b by 2022

North America is currently dominating the market
 - 
05/23/2016

DALLAS—The global home automation market is forecasted to more than double by 2022, according to a recent Marketsandmarkets report, in part due to the Internet of Things and home automation features that save money by reducing energy consumption.

Hey Siri ...

 - 
Wednesday, March 30, 2016

The other night while activating my new phone, my son overheard me setting up the voice-recognition feature, dutifully repeating the set-up phrase, “Hey Siri,” which prompted sarcastic questions from him like, “Hey Dad, are you sure you know how to do that?” and “You want me to help you set that up?”

And while his ribbing was good-natured, he got me thinking about how his post-Millennial generation is growing up in a world where automation and voice activation—in all aspects of life—are expected and even sought out. And not just for asking where the closest vegan restaurant is or the best recipe for lasagna.

In fact, findings from a recent Home Automation Report from the Connected Intelligence Division of the NPD Group, a market research company, found that nearly two-thirds (64 percent) of smart home product owners used a smartphone to control or monitor their home automation devices. Additionally, 73 percent of smart homeowners already use voice commands, with 61 percent of those consumers expressing an interest in wanting to use voice to control more products in their homes.

With the rise of home automation products and services on the residential side, combined with the ever-increasing need for homeowners to have complete control over their systems, dealers and installers find themselves scrambling to keep up with the current pace of technology.

In my discussions with security dealers leading up to ISC West in Las Vegas next week, voice technology and integration is at the top of most of their must-see lists on the tradeshow floor. They realize that residential consumers today are starting to take a serious look at the capabilities of the connected home, especially if they can control it all with an app and the sound of their voice.

And with new players on the resi side now offering DIY and home-automation options and services sans the need for a security system, dealers today need to move swiftly to compete for the smart home market, while effectively imparting to their customers that the two—home automation and security—should be mutually inclusive.

With smart home technologies changing the way homeowners look at security and home-automation, dealers also need to have a staff that is trained to have the right answers for today’s tech-savvy customer.

If they don’t, there are others who are eager to move in and provide that answer and solution, by way of a security system or otherwise.

 

Advanced XANDEM taking orders

 - 
Wednesday, November 11, 2015

XANDEM HOME in Salt Lake City is launching its new DIY home security and automation product that tracks the location of moving people.

The product, which can be installed by homeowners in about 15 minutes, the company says, allows users to monitor where people are moving throughout their homes without using invasive cameras. Think of the safeguarding lasers of the “Mission Impossible” movies, because that’s what it looks like.

The product detects and locates movement through walls and furniture to cover the entire house; integrates with other smart-home systems such as lighting and audio; triggers a siren to scare intruders away and sends mobile app notifications; and includes an API so developers can use the company’s Detect and Locate technology in their own apps and products.

XANDEM, started in a basement in 2008, has been selling in prototype form, but has made advancements such as the phone app and so forth, Joey Wilson, company founder and CEO, told Security Systems News.

“We’re taking orders for XANDEM HOME via Indiegogo soon,” he said. 

The company recently received grants from DHS and the National Science Foundation.

“What we’re seeing is that it used to be if you wanted a security system in your home, you could go to a custom professional or get a rinky dink local package and they could slap it down,” Wilson said. “But now … DIY and MIY are growing rapidly.

“We’re very connected to the IofT. We are not an alarm company. We’re an amazing technology company, not even a security company. We’re like Nest or Dropcam. You can put this in yourself or have an integrator put it in,” Wilson said.

He added that he’s seen a lot of interest from integrators.

 

Good news for dealers: Consumers still disappointed with DIY cameras

Satisfaction with other smart home devices slowly rising, Argus Insights says
 - 
09/30/2015

LOS GATOS, Calif.—Consumers’ disappointment with DIY home security cameras could become a “renaissance” for traditional dealers, according to John Feland, CEO of Argus Insights. Customers need some help, he said, and dealers are positioned to do just that.

White Rabbit receives patent

System’s ‘User Awareness’ function recognizes customers
 - 
09/09/2015

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo.—White Rabbit Electronics, the home automation company recently formed by Bold Technology execs, patented  part of its smart home platform—the system’s “User Awareness.” 

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