The Smart Home Is Here, Making Life Easier for Consumers -- Thanks to New Verizon Service
No more leaving keys under flower pots or door mats for out-of-town visitors, or wondering what you're kids are up to at home while you're at work, or stumbling into an unseen object while walking into an unlit home at night. Verizon's new Home Monitoring and Control service creates a smart home for customers by putting technology in their hands, freeing them to access and control their homes from anywhere.
The innovative service enables customers to remotely access, control and monitor doors, thermostat controls and appliances well as view home-energy use in near-real time – all via a smart phone, PC, FiOS TV and, eventually, a connected tablet.
"Making the smart home a reality is another way Verizon is breaking down barriers between 'home' and 'away' to support a borderless lifestyle," said Eric Bruno, vice president of product management for Verizon. "In addition, we're giving our customers the tools to live greener lives and provide valuable information essential to making decisions about their home-energy usage."
(NOTE: To watch a video of how one New Jersey family is already benefitting from Verizon's Home Monitoring and Control service, visit http://cot.ag/iFLjbs).
A Smart Energy Ecosystem
Whether consumers are budget- or environmentally conscious, or both, the benefits of having an intelligent home that provides convenient access to accurate information on home-energy consumption is an important first step to smart decision making. Thanks to a connected energy reader, Verizon Online's new service lets customers view their energy usage in near-real-time and study energy consumption over periods of time.
"These kinds of two-way communication and intelligent management tools can create a dynamic and interactive relationship between energy users and providers, which is essential to creating a smart energy ecosystem," Bruno said.
The Connected Home Delivered
Verizon first unveiled the automated home service earlier this year at the 2011 Consumer Electronics Show, where the new service was a finalist for CNET Magazine's Best of CES Award. For more information about the service, visit: http://shop.verizon.com/monitoringcontrol.
"In our U.S. consumer survey, home monitoring and home control services rank high in desirability among both broadband and mobile users," said Vince Vittore, principal analyst for the Yankee Group. "So high, in fact, that we believe both have become must-have services for all broadband and mobile providers. The fact that Verizon Home Monitoring and Control is built to seamlessly function on the customer's computer, smartphone and FiOS TV screen, is a significant differentiating factor for this new digital home product."
The service is offered for only $9.99 per month. Equipment packages begin at $69.99, and a variety of connected devices allow customers to customize to their individual needs while gaining savings over the retail prices. Do-it-yourself customers are provided tutorials and information, while customers who prefer to have equipment professionally installed are referred to local installers via InstallerNet.
The first package, a home monitoring kit, enables customers to remotely turn on and off lights, plus peer through networked cameras. The second package, an energy control kit, features energy-monitoring gadgets like the Trane Z wave-enabled thermostat control; special adapters that control appliances; plus a sensor placed on the circuit box to measure electricity use throughout the house. The third package, the home monitoring and control kit, offers both home- and energy-monitoring equipment. There are additional devices like Schlage to allow remote locking and unlocking of doors; advanced cameras that can pan and tilt or be installed outdoors; plus window and door sensors to pair with light modules that allow the lights to turn on when the door is opened. These and numerous other devices can be added to any of the packages, but the monthly service charge remains the same no matter what package a customer chooses or how many devices are added.
Verizon's network technology is at the core of an ecosystem of innovation. To provide the new service, Verizon is partnering with hardware providers ActionTec, Aeon Labs and SerComm, as well as Trane and Schlage, both businesses of Ingersoll Rand. Application provider Motorola Mobility/4Home developed the platform that seamlessly connects various devices in the home to the cloud.
Smart Network Technology that Can Break Down Barriers
Verizon has aggressively invested in intelligent networks: the only all-fiber-optic wired network connected to homes and businesses on a mass scale, the nation's fastest and most advanced 4G wireless network, and one of the largest and most robust global IP backbone networks. Incubators for innovation, the company's networks provide next-generation technology and serve as the foundational elements for solutions to some of society's most urgent problems such as energy efficiency and health care. The company is the only major provider to offer ultra-high-speed symmetrical Internet service, the fastest and most reliable Internet service (150/35 megabits per second) available to consumers on a mass scale.
Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE, NASDAQ: VZ), headquartered in New York, is a global leader in delivering broadband and other wireless and wireline communications services to consumer, business, government and wholesale customers. Verizon Wireless operates America's most reliable wireless network, with more than 106 million total connections nationwide. Verizon also provides converged communications, information and entertainment services over America's most advanced fiber-optic network, and delivers integrated business solutions to customers in more than 150 countries, including all of the Fortune 500. A Dow 30 company, Verizon employs a diverse workforce of nearly 196,000 and last year generated consolidated revenues of $106.6 billion.