Vincent Maret, director of energy at BOUYGUES corporate Research and Innovation, on the challenge of connecting real-world data with the power of the Internet, the work his team is doing in collaboration with energy companies, and the ‘Maslow’s Pyramid’ of digital home services.
Vincent will be speaking at the Digital Home World Summit taking place in London on 18th-19th June. For more information and to register, please visit www.digitalhomeworldsummit.com.
Service providers seem to be taking an increasingly holistic view of “digital home” services to include smart energy meters and the like – do you agree?
Absolutely, we believe a huge challenge facing us is the ability to provide easy-to-use services that connect real-world data and information (energy metering, home appliances etc) with the power of the internet.
While it is of course much easier to incorporate a holistic approach in new build homes, how can older homes benefit from this approach too?
They have to! New construction only accounts for 1% of housing, we must tend to the 99% others. We believe telcos can play a key role.
As an example, IJENKO, a startup company supported by Bouygues Telecom Initiative, provides add-on sensors that you plug on to existing meters and appliances.
They connect seamlessly through our ISP box (BBOX) to provide energy efficiency services.
What work is Bouygues doing with energy companies to incorporate smart meters into its digital home offerings?
Again a key point for the development of viable services. We believe that working with an ecosystem of partners to lay grounds for common standards and interoperability elements is essential.
As an example, Bouygues Telecom works with other companies – among them utilities – to define what those common grounds could be for a ‘home network’.
We also work on city level demonstrators (such as IssyGrid lead by Bouygues Immobilier, a Bouygues Group’s property development company) to better understand energy exchanges at a district level.
Your colleague Yves Caseau spoke to us recently about a ‘Maslow’s Pyramid’ for digital home services – how far up the pyramid do you think we are?
There is no short answer. It depends on the type of building (new, retrofit…) and of services. We are working on separate yet complementary fronts.
Digital home services are not entirely independent from other local (at building or district level) services. We should bear this perspective in mind while working on the stacks of Maslow’s pyramid.
The ultimate goal is to work on building smarter, more eco-friendly and nicer-to-live-in cities and neighbourhoods.