Scott Mosher, Director of Sales at The SOHO Shop, shares how to get wired.
SLHL: What does a homeowner need to start the process of a home automation system?
Scott: Our systems are designed around a single interface that is the same across any device. So, we can simply start with a smartphone (from Apple or Android) or a flat panel to provide the basis for a home automation system. A high-speed Internet connection also helps with features like streaming music and remote access.
SLHL: Can you add to an already existing home? How invasive is the process?
Scott: With the advancements in wireless technology, The SOHO Shop is able to retrofit a majority of the automation technology into an existing home with little to no damage to wall surfaces and structure. However, items like HDTV’s and speakers require us to retrofit wire to maximize their quality and reduce wireless interference. When deploying a system, we do all the staging, pre-programming and testing for quality in our Experience Center prior to coming on-site, which dramatically reduces the amount of time in the customer’s home.
SLHL: How can a system simplify a homeowner’s life?
Scott: Our motto is, “Making One Button Do It All,” which means we design systems to be extremely easy to operate. The lifestyle designers at The SOHO Shop do just that, design around the family’s lifestyle. We have a thorough customer interview process, similar to an interior designer, to learn about the family: their habits, wants and desires. The best way to explain how automating your home simplifies your life is to give an example: you can roll over in bed and with the touch of one button close your garage door, turn off all of your homes lights, have your thermostat back down in an hour, set your security system insuring all your doors and windows are closed and locked, and turn the television on to your favorite program which will turn off automatically in an hour. That is one example, others would be never walking in to a dark home or having the ability to know exactly when your children come home even when you are at work, giving you peace of mind.
SLHL: Explain the difference between a wireless and a wired system. What are the capabilities of each?
Scott: Wireless technologies vary based on the type of automation we are installing. For example, we have wireless music systems that communicate like a laptop using Wi-Fi. Other wireless technologies use a mesh network that allows each device in the system to communicate to each other, creating a stronger network. Wired technology has some distinct advantages over wireless in that they still provide faster communication between devices. They also do not require batteries like wireless technology.
SLHL: Do you have to have an iPhone or iPad to control? What can you control when you are not at home?
Scott: While Apple technology plays a big part, our systems are compatible with Android, PC and MAC. We can also provide other devices to control our systems, like handheld remotes for televisions, and wall-mounted keypads for quick access to specific tasks. The homeowner has the ability to control the entire automation system with their smartphone while they are at work or across the globe. They can adjust lights, arm and disarm the security system, view surveillance cameras, and control pretty much any device in their home that has an on/off switch!
SLHL: How do you adapt to changing technologies?
Scott: We start with a solid platform, built on the knowledge that technology does change frequently. With our technology we are able to remotely update existing systems with the latest and greatest when the homeowner feels the need starting with a small solution then adding on over time.
SLHL: What makes you unique in the industry?
Scott: Our approach to doing business is what makes The SOHO Shop unique. We realize the competitiveness of the buying market for electronics. The goal of The SOHO Shop, unlike our competitors, is to provide a complete solution tailored to each customer’s needs and budget, in order to make them customers for life – not to sell, “boxes” of electronics.