Will Smart Home Technology Encompass Windows and Doors?
The concept of the smart home has been with us for many years. Progress in the market, however, has been limited. Last week's announcement from Lowe's about the launch of the Iris system indicates things are changing. And the residential window and door industry is paying attention.
Therma-Tru Doors, for example, is going to offer doors that allow homeowners to monitor activity with the Lowe's Iris system. Pella is launching SmartSync at the Consumer Electronics Show this week also. It is working with Ingersoll Rand, parent of Schlage, which is relaunching its Schlage Link system into a broader smart home system. Andersen announced it was working with Honeywell a few months ago on window and door locks that communicated with home security systems.
Electronic hardware–locks that communicate with security systems or can be operated remotely–is certainly not new. It's been used in commercial and multi-family applications for years. But is it gaining traction in the single-family market? Is it poised, as Lowe's suggests, to be the next big category in consumer electronics? That's the subject of this week's poll. And as usual, we'd like to hear from you. Are homeowners asking for these options? Has your company installed these products? Email me or post a comment below and tell us about your experience.
Survey Results for 01/11/2012 :
Excluding commercial and multi-family applications, has your company worked with door or window locks or devices that communicate with smart home or security systems?
We haven't worked with such products and we haven't had any requests for them.
We have worked with such products on a few jobs.
We do so on a regular basis.
We have been asked by customers, but we haven't worked with such products.
Based on our poll results, the industry has a long way to go in terms of electronic, smart home type accessories for windows and doors. A little more than 10 percent of our respondents have experience with locks, sensors and other elements that provide enhance security and other potential benefits. I'm left wondering how much enthusiasm there is out there for bringing such products to market.
Pella, Therma-Tru, Andersen, Schlage. These are all big players in our industry that see an opportunity. Lowe's is even bigger. These guys don't always get it right, but I think the rest of the industry should pay attention to the fact that they were all out at the Consumer Electronics Show this year. Advances in wireless technology and the emergence of smartphones and tablets may be changing the landscape for the smart home concept and that could soon translate into new opportunities for suppliers, manufacturers and dealers that are able to find the right partners and package and deliver these products and services in a way that's appealing to homeowners.