I had always believed that the next revolution in technology would be in the field of ‘Internet of Things’ (IoT), which includes connecting the physical world with the internet world, thereby digitizing our day-to-day lives. There are so many applications to IoT, that it is projected to be a multibillion-dollar industry in India itself
Real-time updates of everything including network designs, management systems, and security systems and hence their monitoring can be achieved by IoT. Besides this, the amount of data that can be collected using IoT can give a new dimension to Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence. Be it the weather, motion, GPS coordinates, sales data, medical data, all can be collected by using many DIY sensors. That’s the beauty of IoT, so simple yet so powerful!
But the integration of these IoT devices is very complex currently. A big reason for that is the internet connectivity. Barring a few developed nations, the majority of the countries don’t have an end to end remote connectivity which is hampering the rapid research development of IoT. The market is huge which has confirmed that IoT is the next big revolution after smartphones. But to achieve that, a lot of R&D still needs to be done.
Let me share my experience of confronting Home Automation, which is the largest segment of IoT
About 2 years back, while researching on this, I realized that India had very limited IoT startups, particularly in-home automation space, thanks to our strong aversion to building manufacturing startups
To explore the market, I called a vendor of a global smart homes company in my home at Kota, and he quoted a price of 8 Lakhs for a 3BHK house! This huge price, I realized, was why a common man in India would never be able to adopt this technology. I started researching more on it, and realized this was a field worth exploring because it had the potential to change the day to day life of every middle-class household in India.
I formed a team of 4 young engineers who had previously tried to crack this field but failed, and we started researching on developing an indigenous low-cost smart homes solution.
How we went from idea to product
Within a few months of research, we realized that electronics research is an extremely costly affair. I went to great lengths to convince my family and acquaintances of the potential of the product we were working on and raised enough money to support our R&D. During our entire research, we made sure that we only used low-cost high-quality industrial-grade components which offered high durability but had not been used previously for smart homes. Luckily, about a year back we achieved a breakthrough in our research and came up with a completely innovative design. Around the same time, we were also selected in the ‘Startup India’ program, which proved to be a big help to us since the program took care of all legal costs involved in filing a patent, and got a provisional patent filed on our design in India.
From building product in labs to doing commercial manufacturing
The next task was to move from manufacturing. The idea of frugal innovations was strongly imbibed in the startup’s culture so we came up with a unique lean manufacturing system which could be setup in a single room! To procure electronics raw material, we handpicked small unknown vendors across India who would provide us high-quality components at extremely low cost. We believe that this uniquely Indian way of low-cost agile manufacturing clearly demonstrates that even with small investment, entrepreneurs can build a high-quality manufacturing company.
What is Eden Smart Module
A small hardware module that is installed behind the switchboards of your house which makes all your existing appliances mobile-enabled. Post installation, you would be able to control all your appliances- Fans, Lights, ACs, Geysers etc. using your mobile app or your voice from anywhere in the world!
You will even get push notifications for each device whenever they are turned ON/OFF
Thanks to our unique product design and low-cost manufacturing methodology, we have been able to come up with a product that costs a fraction compared to global products. We now plan to sell it via local entrepreneurs in every city, so it becomes accessible to everyone. The next big task is to come up with a low-cost marketing strategy, which does not involve costly mass marketing medium.
Here are some of the use cases of the product that can be applied in our daily lives :
1) Control all lights, AC, TV and other appliances from the comfort of your sofa
2) Schedule your devices (like geysers in winters) to daily turn ON/OFF automatically as per your lifestyle
3) Control your home from anywhere around the world. You can check the real-time state of all your appliances
4) If you are on a vacation, you can turn your lights ON/OFF to keep burglars at bay
5) You can amaze your guests by turning ON all the lights from your smartphone and let them experience your luxurious lifestyle
6) You are about to sleep in your bedroom at night, you can turn all the lights, fans of other rooms without getting up
7) Senior citizens don’t need to get up from their bed to turn off lights and fans
8) You can schedule your AC to turn off in midnight and turn the fan on daily, thereby saving electricity
9) You will receive push notifications if anyone operates your appliances behind your back
To know more about Eden, Please Visit – Eden Smart Homes
To Know More About Pranjal Kacholia Visit Here Linkedin