Swiss MSO will wholesale iControl in Europe
Swisscom will begin offering iControl's broadband-based home monitoring and control systems to its customers in Switzerland and will also act as a wholesaler of the service to other service providers throughout Europe.
The maneuver might be an indicator of how the technology might be proliferated in North America, as Comcast and Rogers Communications are among the investors in iControl Networks, along with Intel Capital, Cisco and Tyco International. Comcast is in the process of rolling out a service based on iControl's OpenHome Software Platform  in its own markets.
In Switzerland, Swisscom and iControl intend to offer a range of electrical home appliances, such as heaters, lamps, webcams or coffee machines, all linked in an intelligent network, starting next year. The new Smart Living service will enable customers to control their connected appliances via a smartphone or the Web.
"We want to contribute to a safer, more environmentally friendly and more pleasant life for our customers with our new Smart Living offering," explains Dieter Bernauer, CEO of Swisscom Participations.
In the future, machine-to-machine applications will play an increasingly important role. Initially, Swisscom will launch a basic offer to the market. But in the future, there will be other very promising applications, such as tools to help look after elderly relatives or others in need of care. Smart Living products provide support for living longer, more independently and more comfortably in the home. With these products, it will be possible to link delivery and care services, as well as medical devices, to one another via the Swisscom application.