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Smart Devices - Driving Mass Adoption
Dino Lalvani
Founder and Chairman-Hubble
Thursday, July 2, 2015
Whilst the concept of the 'smart home' - a core element of the Internet of Things (IoT) - has been around now for well over three decades, I do believe that the beginnings of true mass adoption is now on the horizon.

This is thanks to, among other factors, increased availability and affordability of sensors - including smartphones, (which had over 2.2 billion users in 2014) - and affordable bandwidth, and so on. Yet whilst many analysts see the fundamental challenges that currently obstruct mass adoption as a result of several key factors such as interoperability (upon which I will elaborate later), standardization and security, I personally believe one of the main problems that we have been ignoring as an industry is that we are not focused enough on delivering demand-driven products that solve the problems our customers are actually facing today.

Do we truly expect to see mass-adoption of smart-watches when, in the eyes of many customers, the only problem they are 'solving' is saving you pulling your phone out of your pocket or bag so frequently?

The company I chair, Binatone, was founded in 1958 and owes much of its success to producing demand-driven products - at affordable prices. And it is precisely this approach we are now applying to our range of connected products, through the combination of our partnership with IoT company 'Hubble Connected' and our Motorola-licensed products.

Being able to keep track of what is important to you when it is important to you is a very basic human need, and the impressive sales of our current range of Hubble Connected Motorola WiFi cameras indicate that our solution is indeed a very popular one.

Building on this success, we will be also offering a solution to the very real problem of lost dogs (according to ASPCA, nearly 4 million are taken in by shelters each year in the US ), when we unveil the world's smartest dog collar - the Motorola SCOUT5000 - in the coming months. This exciting device not only allows the owner to locate their canine, anytime, via GPS, but they can also speak to it via a two-way audio system as well as streaming or recording video from the collar's camera via the Hubble Connected app.

Returning to the subject of the home space, we, through our partnership with our IoT partner, Hubble Connected, will also be launching the world's smartest homephone, the Smart 64 and 66, which in addition to replacing your landline telephone, will also act as a control hub for a range of smart products. And whilst the average customer may not yet feel they have a significant enough number of smart devices in their homes as to justify the ownership of a smart home hub, we believe that ours is the only solution that truly provides end users with enough added value so that, when combined with a very competitive price, it becomes a very attractive proposition for all homeowners.

The ability of the home hub to control both our own Motorola-branded devices as well as those of other brands is also a key part of our evolving IoT strategy, as we see interoperability as a core requirement for all smart products. Consequently - and thanks to our strategic partnership with Hubble Connected (which has allegiances with the AllSeen Alliance and the Thread Group) - our range of IoT products will be interoperable with many other major brands such as Electrolux, LG, Microsoft, Nest and Samsung.

With regard to other developments that excite me, I am personally very excited about the opportunity that the Indian market offers us, which is owed both to my own heritage and the sheer scale of its potential. India is already the world's third largest market with over 230 million Internet users as well as being the fastest growing country in terms of adds per year (63 million in 2014) . Whilst it's sheer size (geographically) and the current state of its infrastructure may pose some challenges, the new government's charter has a clear focus on developing the nation's Internet infrastructure, which is obviously very encouraging.

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