There might be something uncertain about describing the Do-It-For-Me market to the everyday consumer. Somewhere between buying a professional home control solution and scheduling a local dealer to install (or repair) the system, it may seem like a mystery how a consumer got into this mess in the first place. However, the SaaS market continues to grow, as does the DIFM market, and manufacturers like NuBryte are ready to capitalize on the early adopters willing to update their homes.
We last heard about NuBryte in 2015, with a CEDIA (and CES) reveal that showed off a light-switch on steroids aimed at middle-class consumers. If nothing else, it was interesting, but mostly lost in the noise. The California based startup had a seemingly underwhelmed response after their first run at the market, took a year off, and introduced the NuBryte PRO Network; a more homogenous approach for integrators, not consumers
NuBryte's nuanced shift from DIY to DIFM comes from "end users willing to pay more for a quality product, but not for the time to install it," says President and Co-founder Steven Gutteridge.
"It's an all-in-one solution," Gutteridge said. "When we look at a home control market, the biggest barrier to growth is that consumers don't necessarily want to install or maintain a system. That's why we are fully invested in the B2B CEDIA channel."
Their new offering pumped up their price, created a wider margin for dealers on their flagship TouchPoint, and utilized ZigBee 3.0 to play nicely with existing whole home control systems. It also integrates Alexa and Google Home to band-aid any missing utility from the TouchPoint, while recent updates let it play nice with Control4, Crestron, and URC systems.
This year at CEDIA, they also showcased their Smart Switches, that can be paired up four at a time to a switch-box, adding a lot of depth to custom scene setting features. Gutteridge also showed off just how easy it was to set up a single- or double-gang TouchPoint, giving live demos at the booth. Although the TouchPoint was connected to an expectedly spotty network at the convention center in San Diego in the back of CEDIA 2017, it still breezed through a security demo and shot music through their Frankenstein'd combination light-speaker.
Future plans include updating their next day replacement one-year-warranty to a two-year-warranty, adding shading partners for more features, and connecting with other manufacturers to add even more connectivity to the market.
Despite not having an entirely bulletproof plan the first time around, NuBryte is definitely bringing something a little different to the market. The DIFM market is poised to take off, especially when an oversaturated connected home market is starting to leave early adopter phase. If nothing else, NuBryte's market strategy to tap into the middle-class market with a device that promises a frictionless experience is borderline brilliant, especially with a commitment to the CEDIA channel.