I’m currently working on a review of the INSTEON Connected Home Control and Monitoring system. Simply put, I’m impressed and I think you will be too. This morning comes news that the company will be releasing Windows and Windows Phone Apps for the system. Moreover, INSTEON products will soon available in Microsoft Stores and at MicrosoftStore.com.
INSTEON describes itself as “creators of the world’s best-selling home automation and control technology.” Considering the simple instillation and prices that start at under $200 for home automation kits (individual modules start at $29.99) I’m not surprised the company’s products are a hit. The company’s goal is to make home automation easy an accessible for just about anyone.
As the Press Release notes
The INSTEON family of devices turns any home into a connected home. INSTEON users are able to set up lighting scenes, schedule lights to automatically turn on and off, and monitor their homes via wireless cameras from any mobile device. INSTEON kits and modules allow users to receive instant notification alerts when doors and windows are opened or closed, or when there is a water leak in the home.
Best of all, an INSTEON Connected Home System provides all of this without a monthly monitoring fee. Simply buy and install a system. From there you can control the system thanks to a free mobile app. I am using my iOS devices to control the system under review but on June 1, 2014 I’ll be able to use my Windows Phone as a controller too! That’s when an enhanced version of the INSTEON app will be available for Windows 8.1 and Windows Phone devices. The new INSTEON apps aren’t just Windows versions of what exists on other platforms but will, instead, come with exclusive new features. These include
- Visitor Mode: provides restricted access to children or guests in your home
- Live Tiles: get status on multiple devices directly on your Windows 8.1 Start screen (not currently available on Windows Phone 8)
- Enhanced Camera Support: view multiple cameras at once, view full-screen, and camera support without the need of an INSTEON Hub
- Multi-House Support: enables you to control multiple homes or businesses from a single account
- Dashboard View: a quick and organized view of the status of your home
As INSTEON CEO Joe Dada observes,
The Windows 8.1 platform provided INSTEON with an unparalleled opportunity to develop a beautiful and easy-to-use connected home experience. The Live Tile architecture is especially well-suited for home. Users are going to love controlling their INSTEON-connected home from their Windows devices.
In addition, the company’s products will be available through MicrosoftStore.com starting June 1st and in Microsoft Stores some time in July. The Microsoft Stores will offer a range of INSTEON Connected Home System products, including a Starter Kit, Home Kit and Business Kit as well as five standalone devices including a Leak Sensor, an Open/Close Sensor, an LED Bulb, an On/Off Module and a Wireless Wi-Fi Camera. It is worth noting that this marks Microsoft’s retail entry into the connected home market.
If you use Windows 8.1 or a Windows Phone you will want to check out our upcoming review of the INSTEON system. These announcements make clear the fact that INSTEON plans to become and remain a major player in the Home Automation Market. They also reflect Microsoft’s continuing evolution as well as their commitment to enhancing the Windows experience. Learn more here.