CES 2012: Updated Automation
Last year's conversations at CES centered on the miserable economy. This year, however, the talk focused on new sales opportunities and revenue streams, especially around home automation.
The NextGen House was a good starting point to see the different products and technologies converge into full solutions. Dubbed the Energy Miser Concept Home, the space featured some of the industry's biggest names, including Savant, MechoShade, Leviton, SunBriteTV, Philips, Kwikset and Baldwin. The house included Savant's Apple-based control systems, SunBrite's TV, Leviton's wholehouse surge suppression, Decora devices, Renu switches, and home security and door hardware from Kwikset and Baldwin.
Savant's Craig Spinner demoed an in-wall iPad dock that provided full access to lighting, shade control, audio video control and security cameras, as well as the system's new SmartEnergy Monitoring feature. SmartEnergy technology measures energy usage and production in real-time and can deliver historical usage data from multiple energy-management devices. The feature is designed to help users reduce energy costs by monitoring how and when specific devices draw power, particularly during peak pricing or load periods.