Following on from my previous post, I want to spend a few minutes considering the local construction industry.
It would be fair to say that, especially in Northern Ireland, people are often reluctant to change. Change brings uncertainty, risk and the unknown.
For many, that is the case with home technology – traditional tradesmen can often “know best” and avoid new products. This mindset usually stems from a second hand horror story and a series of Chinese whispers, eventually culminating to a feeling of reluctance towards anything unproven within a particular field.
This is ok.
If every electrician suddenly jumped on every new product that was released, the housing market would be a mess of non-standardised interfaces, mis-configured network devices (potentially insecure) and totally infuriating problems*. Customers would not be happy, electricians even less so. 🙁
Thankfully, change also brings opportunity, convenience and a breath of fresh air. According to a survey by PwC last year, 81% of people with smart heating devices notice a positive impact in the daily running of their homes .
Empowering Each Other
I want to take the burden off electricians, plumbers, builders, developers and anyone else working in the housing industry. Home owners, or people renting homes, want technology integrated in their houses now (such as WiFi), rather than it being an afterthought. Whilst it’s very possible to retrofit solutions, it’s a lot more affordable to consider it during a new build or renovation project.
Personally, I don’t know anyone who would be prepared say “I don’t mind if the WiFi doesn’t work that well in my house”. That’s a big change from 5-10 years ago. Reliable whole home WiFi is possible (it should be expected!) if we all work together. Knowing what materials the builder will use in construction helps place wireless access points (the equipment that gets the WiFi signal where it needs to be) in the right places throughout the home. Working with the electrician or M&E engineer gets the correct cables in the right places, by adding them to the wiring schedule.
Attractive lighting that suits the mood in every situation is possible with the right cable infrastructure.
Energy efficient heating controls, where each room can be individually controlled, is easier now than ever before, with just a little forward planning and advice on the plumbing.
Technology needs to meet people where they are at the minute, not try force its way in and unsettle everything on its way. Technology needs to naturally become part of people’s lifestyle, whilst augmenting and improving the electricians, plumbers, and builders workflow. We can make that happen.
*Sadly, for many home owners/renters this is already the case, especially if they’ve went down the DIY route and it hasn’t worked out for them. Fed up? Tell us you want us to “DIFM” (Do It For Me).