Thursday, September 1, 2011

Deutsche Telekom Envisions "Smart Connect" for Smart Homes

Deutsche Telekom, along with partners E.ON, EnWB, eQ-3 and Miele, outlined a "Smart Connect" vision for managing home appliances. The effort aims to unify SmartGrid initiatives with consumer electronics and telecom services. The announcement was made at the IFA 2011 show in Berlin, where the companies are demonstrating advanced home management applications.

The key component of the platform is the so-called "Smart Connect Box," which is located in the customer's home and, in conjunction with various cloud-based functions, acts as the local service center. Deutsche Telekom will offer a device from Sumitomo. The carrier expects to have an initial service available in Germany beginning in mid-2012.

In addition, Deutsche Telekom, E.ON, EnWB, eQ-3 and Miele have agreed to co-develop a technical platform for the varied applications required for the smart home.

"Together with our partners, we aim to lay the foundations of the connected home of the future. The "Smart Connect" platform meets high security standards and can be tailored as a flexible, open solution to meet the requirements of the respective provider", explains Holger Knöpke, Head of Connected Home at Deutsche Telekom, and adds, "In today's world, people live in an environment that has ever greater demands on mobility and flexibility. Together with our partners, we focus on making everyday life easier and, at the same time, on fulfilling the demands of consumers with respect to ecological aspects and costs."

The companies estimate that by 2020, around half of all households in Germany could well be equipped with at least one such "smart" application.