I came across the inspiration for the latest in the “Innovation or Not?” series through a current London Business School student – Marie Milleron – for a Smart Home idea that they are raising money for on IndieGoGo.
The basic premise behind their idea is that ordinary people like me who don’t fancy themselves to be technical wizards or master electricians might like a way to create a smart home without spending thousands of dollars to have a fancy set of sensors installed along with a complicated control system. The AirOn uses Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) and is designed to allow the consumer to remove the faceplate on any switch in their home (light switch or otherwise) and replace it with the AirOn backplate and sensor module. Just the faceplate. No mucking about with any electrical wiring where you might get shocked.
After installation is complete you can control the switch in physical proximity using a simple waving motion or from a distance using the mobile app.
To get a better idea of what their system is intended to do, check out the launch video:
For comparison sake, Comcast sells a light switch for $89.95 (double the proposed post-launch price of an AirOn switch) and that is after you buy a package costing at least $229.95 and sign up for a $19.95 per month service plan.
What do you think, is this an innovation or not?
Sound off in the comments.
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Braden Kelley is a popular innovation speaker, embeds innovation across the organization with innovation training, and builds B2B pull marketing strategies that drive increased revenue, visibility and inbound sales leads. He is currently advising an early-stage fashion startup making jewelry for your hair and is the author of Stoking Your Innovation Bonfire from John Wiley & Sons. He tweets from @innovate.