The home automation market is consolidating, as evidenced by a the merger today of iControl and UControl. Both offer home monitoring, security, and energy management products accessible through the Internet and mobile phones. For instance, with iControl’s iPhone app, you can lower your thermostat from work.
The value of the deal is not being disclosed, but Texas-based UControl will become a subsidiary of iControl and the name of the merged company will remain iControl Networks. The two CEOs, Paul Dawes and Jim Johnson, will remain as co-CEOS. John Doerr of Kleiner Perkins will remain on the board. IControl, which was first backed by Charles River Ventures, has raised $44 million in venture capital so far, compared to about $24 million for UControl. The combined company will have about 100 employees, with roughly two thirds coming from the iControl side.
Both companies distribute their products through partners, primarily broadband cable and phone companies for uControl and security monitoring and utilities for iControl. The largest home security companies in the U.S., ADT, is just now rolling out ADT Pulse, which is powered by iControl, for instance. Both are in the early stages of rolling out their services with various partners, with a total of low tens of thousands of consumers using the service right now. But that could grow very quickly to hundreds of thousands of consumers by next year. The way the economics works is that iControl gets maybe a couple dollars a month per subscriber.
iControl provides tools for the remote home monitoring market. iControl’s Home Security 2.0 integrated solution adds broadband and mobile access (including the iPhone), low-cost IP cameras and remote lighting, thermostat and lock controls to traditional monitored security systems for the ultimate consumer experience. As of November 2010 iControl and uControl are merging to combine their respective strengths to deliver the best platform for the broadband home management market.
uControl is a leading provider of next-generation home security and automation solutions. The uControl Home Security, Monitoring and Automation (SMA) solution enables Broadband Service Providers to deliver the next generation of services for the Digital Home. The uControl SMA Platform and accompanying TouchScreen combine to create an open, technology-agnostic infrastructure that works equally well for all homes whether they have an existing wired alarm system or require a new wireless alarm system to be installed. Beyond home...