Millennials are often the earliest adopters of innovative, new technologies, but because 68 percent of them rent their homes, they are usually excluded from the ever-growing range of smart home devices. The nature of this new tech frequently requires a degree of tinkering with the building’s structure to install, which goes beyond what most home renters are prepared or permitted to do. Now, catering to these gadget-loving renters, Grant Park Village in Portland is an apartment building which has been fully kitted out with all the latest Internet of Things devices by start-up IOTAS.
Each apartment comes, as standard, with a host of smart home devices, including smart lights, plugs and sensors, although these are seamlessly integrated into the property’s design so as not to intimidate Internet of Things newcomers. There are also preset rules, such as lights and music turning on when the inhabitants come home, and all of the lights in the rest of the flat turning off when they shut their bedroom door.
This is just the beginning, however. As users interact with the system via a smartphone app IOTAS will learn from their behavior and expand their services accordingly. The platform collects data on a user’s lifestyle from the way they interact with their home and will offer potential ‘rules’ which it thinks might suit them. Users can, of course, easily opt out of any ‘rules’ they don’t like.
We have seen other attempts to make new tech devices available to renters — such as the balcony greenhouse My Terrace Farmer, and Powertree Services’ EV charging for apartment blocks. Are there other initiatives which could cater to this adventurous market?