“The backbone of all solutions is information technology”

“The backbone of all solutions is information technology”
Aug 2019 , by , in Interviews

Realty+ in conversation with Manoj Kodakkatery, Manager- Business Development, Omron Electronic and Mechanical Components Business Division, India.


Why is smart homes & buildings becoming mainstream?

The basic idea of creating smarter homes and buildings has an overarching objective. It is not only focused on creating a better quality of life for the citizens but also to aim for comprehensive development of the country/region to contribute towards economic growth via enabling local area development and harnessing smart technology. A development of this kind will give a great quality of life along with creating more employment, and thus enhancing the state of living for all concerned leading to the creation of inclusive cities. Hence, at the individual level, the idea is gaining acceptance as a desire to have a decent quality of life, a clean and sustainable environment with the application of ‘smart’ solutions. And at the government level, the idea is becoming mainstream in order to achieve sustainable and inclusive development.

Also, not to be forgotten that it’s a chain. One smart city acts as a model which could be replicated to other cities. A smart building is a playground of varied interconnected systems helping the building to work efficiently and thus saving a lot of energy and resources than a traditional building operating mainly in silos. Studies suggest smart buildings help in saving up to 30 percent of water usage, 40 percent of energy usage and thereby help reduce building maintenance costs by 10 to 30 percent. Industry reports also say that revenue in the smart home market amounts to US$1,691m in 2019 ; with a CAGR of 43.6%, it is expected to achieve a market volume of US$7,189m by 2023. Household penetration is 1.5% in 2019 and is expected to hit 9.5% by 2023 (source: https://www.statista.com)


Please shed light on key devices that help to create a smart home?

A smart home is based on intelligent & smart solutions which in turn comprise of devices bringing in sustainable value around varied aspects such as energy management (for example, Heating Ventilation and Cooling infrastructure- HVAC), waste management, environment control, mobility (smart parking management systems) , e-governance, disaster management, citizen services like surveillance, et al. The backbone of all these solutions is information technology integrating all key functions of the building in order to deliver an enhanced living experience to the residents.
The notable technology which forms the foundation of present-day smart buildings is the Internet of Things (IoT). IoT is a technology that is used to interconnect embedded objects/devices such as sensors, mobile devices and so on and facilitate communication among them without the need for any human intervention.


According to you, what are the restraints in Home Automation Market segment?

The first and foremost is affordability. Many of the smart solutions, at this point of time, are expensive which makes them positioned at the top end of the market only. Also, even at the top end, the solutions are expected to take longer to be deployed completely at a large scale owing to many more challenges at the city and state level such as retrofitting the existing cities and the existing frameworks of utilities, channeling finance, co-ordination among multiple stakeholders, the unavailability or lesser availability of supporting technology infrastructure, etc.


What are the different price ranges of automation available?
Broadly, as per the industry trends, it varies from 60 USD low end to 3400 USD for high-end systems.


Advanced automation devices/ sensors offered by OMRON for various projects and their applications?

Sensors form an integral part of the automation system in a smart building which basically comprises of an automatic centralized control acting as a nodal centre to manage the key functions such as the building’s heating, ventilation, air conditioning, lighting, etc. with a bigger goal to make it safer, convenient, energy-efficient, cost-efficient, comfortable and future-ready for the residents to live in. Sensors form the bedrock of the whole system by tracking and transmitting data on varied important factors such as temperature, humidity, level of lighting, human presence, to name just a few over to the controllers which in turn transmit it ahead in the cycle.
Centered upon ‘Internet of Things’ based solutions, OMRON has been working on presenting offerings in the Sensors arena that have utility across varied aspects of building & home automation. These are highly compact and durable sensors which when embedded in equipment/devices, collect data and contribute in the proper functioning of the complete solution. This is possible owing to the technologies they come imparted with, such as – human sensing, condition sensing, heat sensing, flow sensing, object sensing, distance sensing, vibration sensing to name a few presented in the form of Omron Environmental Sensor, Dust sensor, Thermal Sensor and Earthquake sensor, etc. in our portfolio.

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