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A large number of vendor initiatives have been observed in 2014 to realize the possibilities of “Smart Home”:

·         Google’s acquisition of Nest learning thermostat

·         Samsung’s unveiling of “Smart Home” concept

·         Apple released iOS 8 with HomeKit and Healthkit

·         Microsoft partnered with SmartLabs’ Insteon

Most of the benefits for end-users can be segregated into two segments:

·         Efficient energy consumption: Utilities can exploitthe smart meter initiatives (along with Green Button data) to get a foot-hold into Smart home services market.

·         Home security/monitoring: It can complement various applications of wearable devices for reducing risk to health and property, and help Insurance providers.

The initiatives from leading vendors, like Apple, Google, Microsoft and Samsung is expected to lead the way for the ecosystem. While some of these have been steps in right direction, the plethora of diverse activities needs co-ordination to hasten maturity of ecosystem, and improve customer experience.

The relevance of existing short-range communication technology alliances (ZigBee, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Z-Wave, Thread, Insteon, etc.) will depend on patronage from the leading vendors. As of now, each of these vendors has stuck to their proprietary platforms. In this scenario, end-users will have to rely on third-party aggregation platforms, which can interact with all relevant communication technologies and control appliances. Various telcos have been experimenting to provide home automation services, where they provide services for equipment monitoring and control, as well.

Example: A start-up Wink is working with retailers like Home Depot to educate end-users. Two start-ups focusing on related areas got acquired, recently: Google Nest acquired Revolv and Samsung acquired SmartThings.

The developments this year in “Smart Home” carried forward the concepts of:

·         Connected Home (where all energy consuming appliances are wirelessly connected)

·         Remote controlon a single dashboard (on premise, web or, from mobile devices)

·         Intelligent consumption for reducing energy wastage (using thermostats  and Smart Appliances)

The Smart Grid stakeholders will look forward to include monitoring of sources of energy (Electricity and Gas) into “Smart Home” ecosystem. As Green Button data is already available for mobile devices, integrating them with “Smart Home” applications should be possible. Voice/Gesture-activated commands, Biometric authentication and Geofencing (to trigger location-based triggers) will shape the user interface.

A large number of vendor initiatives have been observed in 2014 to realize the possibilities of “Smart Home”:

·         Google’s acquisition of Nest learning thermostat

·         Samsung’s unveiling of “Smart Home” concept

·         Apple released iOS 8 with HomeKit and Healthkit

·         Microsoft partnered with SmartLabs’ Insteon

Most of the benefits for end-users can be segregated into two segments:

·         Efficient energy consumption: Utilities can exploitthe smart meter initiatives (along with Green Button data) to get a foot-hold into Smart home services market.

·         Home security/monitoring: It can complement various applications of wearable devices for reducing risk to health and property, and help Insurance providers.

The initiatives from leading vendors, like Apple, Google, Microsoft and Samsung is expected to lead the way for the ecosystem. While some of these have been steps in right direction, the plethora of diverse activities needs co-ordination to hasten maturity of ecosystem, and improve customer experience.

The relevance of existing short-range communication technology alliances (ZigBee, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Z-Wave, Thread, Insteon, etc.) will depend on patronage from the leading vendors. As of now, each of these vendors has stuck to their proprietary platforms. In this scenario, end-users will have to rely on third-party aggregation platforms, which can interact with all relevant communication technologies and control appliances. Various telcos have been experimenting to provide home automation services, where they provide services for equipment monitoring and control, as well.

Example: A start-up Wink is working with retailers like Home Depot to educate end-users. Two start-ups focusing on related areas got acquired, recently: Google Nest acquired Revolv and Samsung acquired SmartThings.

The developments this year in “Smart Home” carried forward the concepts of:

·         Connected Home (where all energy consuming appliances are wirelessly connected)

·         Remote controlon a single dashboard (on premise, web or, from mobile devices)

·         Intelligent consumption for reducing energy wastage (using thermostats  and Smart Appliances)

The Smart Grid stakeholders will look forward to include monitoring of sources of energy (Electricity and Gas) into “Smart Home” ecosystem. As Green Button data is already available for mobile devices, integrating them with “Smart Home” applications should be possible. Voice/Gesture-activated commands, Biometric authentication and Geofencing (to trigger location-based triggers) will shape the user interface.

 

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