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Wireless Home Automation

Techstination feature for Thursday, November 30, 2006

Wireless home automation. Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. Home automation systems have been around for years. One of the easiest and cheapest technologies is called X-10. It uses the electrical wiring in your home to send signals to turn lights or appliances on and off. A new and more reliable technology that uses radio signals instead of wiring is called Z-Wave. And a flood of Z-Wave products are poised to arrive on the market in the coming months. Some are available now. Grant Sullivan of Leviton…the leading maker of switches and outlets…

"You can press a button in the bedroom and be controlling lights all across the house. One button will turn all the outside lights on or off. The Z-Wave system is a very open standard from the standpoint of various manufacturers. In fact at this point there's 125 of them. All of them bring their products together. So you can have a Wayne Dalton garage door opener that can also talk to our lighting system."

So when you open the garage door….the lights in your home come on automatically. At Intermatic, VP for innovation Michael Einstein says …

"We really believe that home builders will start adding this to homes because there will be very little price difference, ten dollars more than a standard dimmer. We believe consumers will also start using it as they want to have that million dollar experience in their 250 thousand dollar home. It's very easy to do. It's easy to install."

Intermatic is selling a Z-Wave HomeSettings starter kit that includes a master controller and two lamp modules for about 130 dollars. Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin.