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IoT company pitches 'emotional home'

Posted: 07 Sep 2015     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Binatone  IoT  emotional home  cloud  GPS 

Binatone, a consumer electronics company, is raising the flag of "emotional home." The man behind the concept is consumer GPS pioneer Kanwar Chadha.

The pitch isn't about just saving time or making things convenient. Instead, it's using IoT, an end-node device and the accompanying cloud services, to enhance emotional connections people already have with babies, pets and elders.

The company promoting this digitally enhanced "emotional home" is Binatone. The man behind the concept is Kanwar Chadha.

For people who've grown up in the US, Binatone, headquartered in Hong Kong and London, isn't exactly a household name. But in the realm of cordless phones, baby monitors, navigation devices and other small, personal electronics products, it has brand recognition in the UK, elsewhere in Europe and India.

Kanwar Chadha

Kanwar Chadha

Moreover, for anyone old enough to remember how GPS ended up in every smartphone, Chadha might be a more familiar name. Founder of SiRF Technology in 1995, he pioneered the concept of "GPS for Consumers," when the rest of the world thought it was both silly and risky.

Chadha became executive chair of Binatone earlier this year.

Motorola Mobility

Binatone got another boost recently to scale its global business. The company acquired license rights to Motorola Mobility's accessories from Lenovo.

Binatone has had a partnership with Motorola Mobility since 2008. The company is an official licensee for Motorola baby monitors, home and pet monitors. The new agreement "will add a range of consumer mobile accessory products including mono and stereo Bluetooth headsets, wireless speakers and car connectivity products to its portfolio of licensed products," according to Binatone.

So, why does this matter?

Binatone, since late last year, has been undergoing a major makeover into, Chadha said, an IoT company.

Call me jaded. The sceptic in me said, sure, every wannabe in the gadget racket has a "smart," "connected" device that's just perfect for the Internet of Things. Whether it's smart thermostats, door locks or home surveillance cameras, we feel like these things have been clogging the booths at the Consumer Electronics Show since the turn of the millennium.

But Chadha, who likes to describe his firm a "startup with 56-plus years of heritage" explained that Binatone isn't climbing onto IoT bus just to make a lot of point products. "It's an end-to-end platform play we are interested in."

Baby, pet and family

Binatone is building an IoT platform where a number of small, and connected, consumer devices can be effectively served by Hubble Connected Limited, a global IoT service provider. Hubble brings the ability to offer affordable full global cellular connectivity. Chadha also, not coincidentally, executive chair of Hubble, said it will deliver exactly what those IoT end devices need, by offering live video streaming, cloud recording and GPS tracking among other things.

Further, Binatone is organising the company's vast portfolio of seemingly unrelated products in three main areas: baby, pet and family.

Of course, every company promotes its IoT products as labour-savers that make consumers' lives easier and more convenient.

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