We all knew that such a product would be made someday. We all also did hear about Googles of the world working on creating such a product. But in what can be seen as a perfect portrayal of picture of new India – the big innovation is happening here in Mumbai.
The product – Air, owned by Leaf Technologies, is an IOT Smart Home solution created by IIT Bombay graduates and is all poised to give Google and Samsung a tough competition. Through their platform, the company intents to help their customers save time, energy and improve the security of their homes.
To tell you the least, the product lets you control all your home appliances from your mobile phone. And the founders claim that to be only 25% of the functionality of what the product can actually do. The Air product will also learn from your actions and preferences to execute things on your behalf, let you control your appliances from anywhere (inside or outside your house) and even schedule them beforehand, keep your house safe by giving you a notification when someone is trying to open your house (using motion detection technology), lets you save on your energy bills by switching off your devices when you are not at home and also makes you a judicious and informed energy consumer by giving you insights and reports on your electricity usage. The product is also compatible with and can be connected to a camera (for intrusion detection or to help you see if your kids doing fine when they are alone at home) and a door lock system (so that you can unlock the door from anywhere using your smartphone). The product can also activate a child lock on your appliances. An appliance lock feature is also available. Here is a small video showing what the product can do :-
The product also does not require to make any additional changes to your home other than installing the Air Sensor and having a working wifi connection inside your house. The complete installation takes about 30 to 40 minutes only. (To get more clarity about the product click here !)
Competing With Google And Samsung
Air competes with Google’s Nest and Samsung’s SmartThings. In 2014, Google acquired Nest Labs for $3.2 billion. Nest is primarily a Thermostat platform that allows you to remotely control the temperature inside your home and has a self learning algorithm that eventually learns your temperature patterns and self adjusts itself. The company is said to be working on adding a number of functionalities to its product which could make the product provide functionalities similar to that of AIR. Below is the video showcasing the Google Nest Platform.
In terms of functionality, Samsung’s SmartThings and Leaf Technology’s Air Platform are pretty similar.Video below gives information about Samsung’s SmartThings.
The Privacy Concern
At several conferences and on various media sites where smart home devices have been discussed, privacy is one of the main concerns that has been brought up. Installing an intelligent device inside the house will mean giving out information about your behavioral patterns to a company. To these privacy concerns Air team responds by saying all the data will be stored locally on 8GB SD card which is installed in the Air itself and even that is encrypted with 256 AES technology. The data will be stored with the same level of encryption and security that bank and financial data is being stored and users therefore do not need to be concerned about data security.
Vaibhav Tolia is the CEO and is one of the co founders of Leaf Technologies. Vaibhav previously has also been one of the cofounders of Housing.com. The other co-founders are Ashish Talewar, Srijan Dhare, Tarun Sahu and Avilash Kumar. The founders were thinking of creating a disruptive product and felt that not much innovation has happened in the smart homes segment. They then decided to come up with this home automation product and Leaf Technologies was born in 2014.
The first batch of the product is already sold out and the company currently has a wait list open for the next batch. The product will be priced at Rs. 24, 600.
The company is currently scaling very fast and has established a full fledged tech and logistical presence in 10 cities in India already . They will look at selling the product in many more cities and on a global scale now.