If your focus is broadband and communications technology and applications, we give you four reasons why you should know about the SmartGrid. Reason #1 is potential access to some part of $3.6 billion in funding. Learn the others in this article which explains the emerging role of the Smart Grid, why it is relevant to the broadband home, why action is underway now, and what some of its impacts will be.
We have reported on Silicon Valley from time to time. This time we briefly report on visits with Ozmo Devices, 4Home, Actiontec and TiVo. 4Home and Actiontec both showed us "smart home" applications.
Wireless Home Control Coming of Age: Z-Wave and Zigbee (BBHR 2/25/2008)
Wireless home control is the secret sauce that enables you to automatically change your thermostat setting, turn on your plant lights or water your lawn when you are thousands of miles from home. Last year we left CES without a clear vision of how the market might play out. This year, we've decided on which systems we're going to test in our own home.
We went to EH Expo earlier this month and were surprised at first by how little has changed in the two years since we last went to this show. While IP-based home networking dominates the planning of the PC and consumer electronics industries, most vendors and integrators at EHX still think in terms of proprietary products and single-purpose networks. The move toward openness, integration and more use of IP communications seems inevitable, and we did see a few "points of light".
At CES we saw Shell HomeGenie, a new home management system targeted to the entry level buyer, just getting acquainted with home control and looking for simplicity and affordability. It builds upon the increasing number of consumers who have broadband access, since such access is a prerequisite for the service. It promises to let "the homeowner stay connected to his home, at anytime and from anywhere Internet access is available."
During our June visit to Spain, Telefónica showed us their "Hogar Digital" and their trial of home-based health services in operation today with actual patients. This guest article provides an overview of the project’s goals and its conclusions to date. The application includes telemetry of medical equipment in the patient's home.
Energy Management - "Broadband Without Internet": A Guest Article by Mark Francisco (BBHR 5/14/2003)
Mark Francisco of Comcast writes about Comcast's ongoing trial of energy management services in collaboration with the electrical utility. This is an example of a “Broadband without Internet” application which requires a persistent broadband connection but does not require high speed or other features associated with the Internet.
Report on Electronic House Expo -- Window Blinds, Central Vacuums and Home Networking (BBHR 4/2/2002)
Imagine what it's like to keep up with the latest advances in systems as diverse as home security, computer networking, central vacuums and energy management. That's the tall order being taken on by home system integrators. In our trip to EHX and follow-up visits, we saw how companies are targeting the mass market, the high end and new construction. We also got the scoop on similarities and differences between product suppliers, and got some glimpses of the future of audio and video networking.