For this week’s green building perspectives post, we spoked with Control4, a leader in affordable, IP-based home control and entertainment systems. Control4 technology is at the heart of the Green Life Smart Life project, managing all the pieces of home control, entertainment and energy management. Control4 develops and delivers award-winning control software and hardware for virtually any room, home or building from anywhere at any time. Control4 is the affordable, easy to use, and easy to install solution for digital living.
1. What do you think of the Green Life Smart Life Project? What interested Control4 in the GLSL project?
Green Life Smart Life is an excellent project to reinforce Control4’s ongoing commitment to bring residential energy management for the home to the mainstream consumer industry. By bringing the latest technology and sustainability together under one roof, Green Life Smart Life showcases the Control4 system as the perfect solution to meet the needs of a LEED-H certified home while maintaining a digital, connected lifestyle. Using a home automation platform, the Control4 system will provide the homeowners with information and control through energy management, lighting, HVAC, security and entertainment to achieve a sustainable, eco-friendly smart home. Green Life Smart Life will provide the opportunity for consumers to learn about Control4’s Operating System and how it is integrated into any home to make life easier by providing a seamless platform that enables all of the home’s products and systems to work together.
2. Where does Control4 see green building going in the next 5 years?
More and more people are becoming increasingly aware of their energy usage and finding ways to reduce the carbon footprint of their family as well as their home. Now, Smart Grid initiatives are providing the ability for 2-way communication between utility providers and end users. New products like smart meters and energy monitoring software are available to better manage energy consumption by allowing users to see real time energy use, and ultimately measurable savings as this information affects their behaviors and consumption. This movement will undoubtedly send ripple-effect of green building initiatives across residential and commercial markets in the coming years.
3. How do you see your business evolving to address green building?
Control4’s automation and control systems for homes and commercial applications provide significant reductions in energy consumption without a compromise in lifestyle. We have been and will continue to be committed to this space by making greater strides in product development and strategic partnerships to benefit green building and its consumers. Going forward, Control4’s product portfolio will include more energy efficient products. Our energy efficient product additions will allow customers to not only have more on-demand information about their energy usage, but also let them take control of their usage through Control4’s system solutions. With the announcement of our new AMI (Advanced Metering Infrastructure) division (this could link to article), Control4 has recently secured funding to begin business and product development as well as partnerships with utility companies. We hope that through smart meters and residential energy management, home automation will assist with allowing homeowners to build and live more sustainably.
4. What challenges do you see your company facing in the evolution?
The largest hurdle will be how quickly the utility providers’ solutions are introduced to the market. We have seen slow, yet steady, progress in the past year and a greater investment more recently which is encouraging. It will take a number of years for the Smart Grid system to spread across the nation, but commitment and support from the utility companies is imperative.
5. Do you think green practices/manufacturing will ever dominate your business/organization?
No, it will not dominate our business per se, but it will definitely influence our product design and manufacturing processes going forward. Our energy management initiatives will become an integral part of our business model and support are already thriving home automation and entertainment platform.
6. What do you think custom CE installers need to do or prepare to do to take full advantage of the green movement?
First and foremost, custom CE installers need education. Installers interact with end users daily and we need to better educate them on the green evolution we see happening in the industry and ensure that they have the proper product offering to meet the demand of these customers. It is also important that they listen to customers that are interested in a more sustainable lifestyle and energy savings. This story is an important one and can ultimately become it a profitable one. Control4 provides solutions that fit the user’s lifestyle by offering the homeowner the convenience, and energy and cost savings of a home automation system, while providing a profitable home control platform for Control4 system integrators.