Audio West president John Phillips gives a presentation to several Central Alberta home builder in the Platinum Homes and Developments show home in Vanier Woods East on Wednesday.

A summit of home technology

It seems there’s an iPhone/iPad app for just about everything

It seems there’s an iPhone/iPad app for just about everything. Now you can add residential lighting, temperature control, music, security and a variety of other house-related items to the list.

Clare Controls LLC of Florida demonstrated on Wednesday how a myriad of home lifestyle functions can be monitored and controlled using Apple devices.

Working with Red Deer’s Audio West, it held a “residential technology summit” in a Vanier Woods home.

There, about a dozen local home builders learned about the Clare Controls system — called ClareHome — and how it’s expected to take home control automation to the next level.

“The reaction was incredibly enthusiastic,” said Audio West president John Phillips.

“We’re looking at about 400-plus installations in the next 12 months.”

In fact, he said, some builders now plan to incorporate a ClareHome controller into every house they construct.

Buyers could then customize the system to their needs.

“They’re making it standard, just like carpet and tile.

“It will not be an option. It will actually be part of the house.”

Home control automation is not a new development, said Phillips. But Clare Controls’ system has brought the price down to a level most people can afford — about $2,000 and up.

He added that ClareHomes simplicity, and its Apple connectivity, also appeals to many.

“I think it will be in every single house in 10 years.”

Clare Controls president Brett Price said his company is currently working with Canadian “channel partners” — like Audio West — in Toronto and Alberta. Red Deer, he said, has proven to be a particularly fertile market.

“It’s bordered on viral up here.”

Price described how his system can be connected to virtually every wireless feature in a home. Users can adjust things like security systems, entertainment systems and electronic door locks from on site or thousands of kilometres away.

They can even use it to turn off a home’s main water valve, adjust window shades or tap into security camera images, added Phillips.

“You can take an iPad anywhere in the world and it will function identically to if it’s in your residence.”

Price expects ClareHome to be accessible by users of Android operating systems by next year.

It can be incorporated into a house during construction or retrofitted after the fact, he pointed out.

hrichards@bprda.wpengine.com

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