ViewQwest sets sights on smart home market

ViewQwest sets sights on smart home market

The broadband provider's CEO Vignesa Moorthy used his home, a pre-World War II bungalow, to showcase the possibilities of enabling technology in one's home to monitor security and usage of appliances.

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SINGAPORE: First it launched the world's fastest home broadband plan with speeds of up to 2GBps and now ViewQwest is eyeing the smart homes market. The broadband service provider is hoping nation's Smart Nation initiative as well as maturing technology would entice more to upgrade their homes with such tech.

CEO Vignesa Moorthy on Thursday (Nov 19) opened his doors to the media, and used his bungalow to showcase the possibilities of the Internet of Things (IOT) to help owners manage their homes.

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Mr Vignesa Moorthy’s smart home, a pre-World War II bungalow (Photo: S Shiva)

For instance, using an app called the August Door Lock, Mr Moorthy unlocked the door, while another app - called WeMo - remotely opened the front gate to his estate. He also demonstrated how the lights, locks, and electronics that are Wi-Fi-relay enabled can be remotely controlled with just a smartphone.

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Mr Moorthy closes the front gate with his smartphone as a remote (Photo: S Shiva)

These were done despite the house dating back to before World War II, the CEO added.

"A smart home is not about turning on and turning off lights. It’s really about monitoring the home and setting things to happen when triggered," he said. "Everything in the house is not rocket science and is below a thousand dollars."

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Mr Moorthy demonstrating how the WeMo app allows him to customise the controls of the Wi-Fi relay-enabled devices (Photo: S Shiva)

It is not just private houses that benefit from being automated. HDB apartment flats can also install these smart home products, he said.

Said Mr Moorthy: "What we are trying to show is that if the smart home works with a house that's over 50 years old, then everyone and anyone can upgrade their home."

In terms of addressing the interoperability issue, the CEO said as the appliances are based on Wi-Fi, there is no problems for homeowners to install programmes from different service providers.

"The rise of affordable and interoperable smart home devices will change the world and we want to be an early player in this new greenfield business," he added in press release issued on Thursday.

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The UniFi video app shows a live stream of the security cameras installed around the house (Photo: S Shiva)

To attract consumers, Mr Moorthy said the company's e-store would offer more such smart home appliances in the coming days, and it hopes to expand the number of offerings to around 50 by end-2016. Gadgets like Philips Hue smart lighting, Amazon Echo voice commanders, and Arlo wireless cameras are currently available, the company said.

ViewQwest will also bundle smart home products with its fibre broadband subscriptions at the SITEX show next week and plans to work with property developers to install affordable smart home systems, he said, but declined to name these partners.

Source: CNA/ss