Founded in 2003, Control4 creates personalized whole home automation and control systems that allow customers to control virtually any device in a home or business automatically. Control4’s custom integrators work with the biggest brands in consumer electronics, appliances, lighting, home security, and energy—including Infratech. The systems’ whole home integration capabilities fully illustrate what it means to have a “smart home,” making it possible to dim the lights, stream high-resolution music, turn up the heat, lock the doors and arm the security system with just one touch.
With smart home integration continuing to increase in popularity in home and business design, we were happy to get in touch with our partners at Control4 systems to get their inside perspective on smart home technology (including climate control with our heaters and beyond). We spoke with Marketing Communications Manager, Crystal Watts.
What trends have you noticed in smart home technology?
Connected devices are on the rise, and as more and more of them come online, they are becoming harder to manage and it’s important to connect them together. We’re consistently seeing that homeowners want choice. They want a smart home that has the ability to manage multiple systems inside or outside—whether it’s lighting, climate, entertainment, security and so on—so that they can control and automate the devices and products that they already use and love, on one platform, through any interface they want.
How does smart home technology and home design mesh?
The great thing about smart home technology is that all of the equipment can be tucked away in a closet or media cabinet, so you never even know it’s there. Instead of all of the black boxes hanging around your TV, all you have is the TV itself and a remote. And the interfaces that we have—keypads, touch screens, etc.—are beautiful and designed to aesthetically complement any home.
What inspires you about smart home systems?
Personalization. Every Control4 home is tailored to the lifestyle of the families and individuals who live there. Say, for instance, you love to entertain. You might want a “Cooking” scene that starts your Pandora playlist in the kitchen and ramps up the lights while you prepare dinner. Then another “Party” scene that kicks the playlist onto the patio speakers, turns on your outdoor Infratech heaters, and locks the doors inside of the house while you and your guests are in the backyard.
How do your customers’ lifestyles influence your products?
Control4 homeowners use our solutions in a multitude of ways. Some have busy lifestyles that require simplification through real automation, not just control. For instance, the moment they pull into the garage, the door unlocks, the alarm deactivates, the lights light a pathway and their favorite music begins to play in the living room. Others may want their homes to respond to set schedules, such as a “Wakeup” scene set for 6:00 A.M. that gradually turns on lights, increases the volume on the overhead speakers and brings up the temperature before they get out of bed. And some may desire more hands-on control over their experiences, with scenes they can manually activate with the press of a button on a touch screen, keypad on the wall, or even their iOS or Android devices. And the best part is, they can have any or all of the above!
Do you find that seasonal transitions impact your product popularity?
Not generally. A smart home is perfect for any season. It can even be automated to respond to the weather conditions, which is great for climate control indoors.
When and why do your customers use Infratech heaters?
We find that a lot of homeowners enjoy entertaining outdoors year-round. Infratech, working in unison with Control4, gives them the ability to warm up the patio, seating areas, or other outdoor spaces quickly and easily by the press of a button. It makes providing guest comfort effortless and entertaining much more enjoyable.
Where do you see smart home technology headed?
As smart devices continue to amass, living in a home filled with smart home technology will become the new normal. This is where we feel Control4 is pivotal. Instead of providing point-products that deliver a convoluted and cumbersome experience—like DIY thermostats, lights, locks, and more that use separate apps to function—whole home automation will continue to pull together various devices and systems into one easy-to-use system functioning over a unified platform. This, in turn, gives individuals and families a more enjoyable (and smarter) experience in their homes.