Security Report: Honeywell
CustomRetailer: What are some of the most pressing security needs that integrators have that your products can uniquely solve?
Rob Puric: Security relates to the life safety area—meaning fire and smoke detectors, CO and flood detectors. Those are the kinds of things we associate with securing the premises. But the other part that I think is equally important is lifestyle—meaning a security system that also provides the homeowner with the ability to do things such as energy management with respect to home automation. What we’re talking about with Honeywell is energy management in terms not just of hooking up a thermostat, but integrating to provide the homeowner with life safety functions that can control lights and door locks, and also control their energy use, while at the same time interfacing with a security system to provide life safety. The four areas we address are life safety, lifestyle, home automation and energy management, and those are the four top tiers we’re targeting with our newest products. What ties it all together for Honeywell is our Total Connect 2.0, which is our remote services capability. Users can tie in with a smartphone or tablet and communicate through the cloud with their home.
CR: Update our readers on the types of products you have recently introduced.
Puric: The first, Tuxedo Touch, launched earlier in the year. Just last month, we announced a completely wireless Wi-Fi version that offers a homeowner the ability to hook into an existing Honeywell alarm system that can do security and home automation of up to 232 Z-Wave devices. No Cat 5 line needs to be run, as was needed in the first version. It’s also our first Linux-operating-system-based device. And it has a host of capabilities for security, lifestyle and home automation enhancement. It can link to door locks and shades, and to products from various lighting manufacturers. In lighting, that currently includes Leviton and GE Jasco. In door locks, that includes Yale, Kwikset and Schlage. In shades, it’s Somfy, which has Z-Wave motors that work with Tuxedo Touch. And in thermostats, it’s Honeywell and other Z-Wave thermostats like Trane and Wayne-Dalton. We are talking with other Z-Wave manufacturers as well.
The other system is our LYNX Touch. With that, we have introduced wireless technology as well. And for the first time in the industry, we are able to put alarm transport over a Wi-Fi network. Another technology advancement from Honeywell was putting a 4G HSPA+ radio inside the LYNX Touch; we now not only have communication over a 4G network through Wi-Fi, but through phone lines available in the home, we can access it for the alarm transport. It’s a fully self-contained system; all it requires is power to the outlet, and you’re good to go.
CR: In what categories do you see the most growth of the Honeywell brand in the custom environment?
Puric: Two areas: lifestyle and energy management. One thing in energy management at CEDIA Expo is enabling our Tuxedo Touch with the capability of integrating with an E-Mon submeter that has CT clamps that attach to a circuit breaker box; it shows peak loads. The homeowner or business owner can then see what the energy usage is, and become an energy-smart consumer. We’re tieing lifestyle, life safety and now energy management together.
The other announcement is about our Total Connect remote services. We’ve already launched, but for the CEDIA channel, we’re emphasizing awareness of that capability.
CR: What features of Honeywell’s product lines hold the most importance among integrators?
Puric: The big one for us is Wi-Fi. If you look at broadband penetration across North America, it’s quite high – around 70 percent. Everything’s connected to the cloud. For Honeywell, as a security manufacturer, it was a natural extension to provide Wi-Fi in this key technology within the home that ties in with life safety and lifestyle.
The whole premise behind LYNX Touch was to make it quicker and easier to install. A typical scenario is about two and a half hours. But with our LYNX Touch, we’re seeing an average of an hour to an hour and a half, from the time the installer walks into the home, installs a system and trains the customer on how to use it. It saves time and can give the dealer more profit in RMRs (Recurring Monthly Revenues).
We also have added demo apps for the iPad for Total Connect and LYNX Touch so that a salesperson can actually demonstrate them to the homeowner, even before the installer arrives. And on every Tuxedo Touch unit, there’s a button called Training. Hit it, and up pop five different screens about installing Z-Wave door looks, programmable thermostats, etc. It walks the integrator through the online training without having to go to a website to download information. We’ve also put into Tuxedo Touch a built-in web server that allows a homeowner within the premises to access through a smartphone or iPad the security panel without any additional software – that’s an industry first, as well.