Google and Nest pack more than 25,000 apartments with smart home tech

The smart apartment has had a slower evolution than traditional single-family smart homes but it looks like the market is on the cusp of a major change. On Thursday, June 28, Alliance Residential Company announced the launch of its “Alliance SmartHome” technology package across more than 25,000 luxury apartments across a $10 billion portfolio that ranges across 19 states and 33 metropolitan markets.

The Alliance SmartHome package has been assembled in partnership with Google and smart home technology platform Dwelo. Specifically, the package means that each designated apartment will include a Google Home Mini, powered by Google Assistant, as well as a Nest Learning Thermostat and a variety of smart locks, light switches, and wall outlets. The entire range of smart home devices will be centrally controlled through the Dwelo cellular-enabled hub, including convenient access for multifamily managers via the Alliance SmartHome dashboard application.

“After two years in development, we are pleased to launch Alliance SmartHome,” Jay Hiemenz, president of Alliance Resident Company, said in a press release. “Home automation in single-family homes has been trending for years now — and our residents desire that same high-tech home system in an apartment. We created Alliance SmartHome to deliver the features our customers want while addressing the unique challenges of multifamily integration to provide a great customer experience and establish a platform for future enhancements in technology.”

Alliance’s technology department, led by Senior Vice President of Technology Scott Pechersky, invested a significant amount of time and resources in assembling a platform and product package that meets the needs and desires of their customers. The company noted Dwelo’s ability to scale and quality of customer support, as well as its acknowledgment that unlike traditional smart home technology, smart technology designed for multifamily apartments needed to include a human solution for implementation and ongoing support.

On that note, residents will be able to reach a support team of Dwelo employees 24/7, while the company’s cloud-based platform will allow it to implement upgrades and fixes on the fly. Alliance also pointed to the ongoing development resources at Google and Nest as additional benefits.

“Dwelo is thrilled to be partnering with a group as respected and innovative as Alliance,” Dwelo CEO Mike Rovito said in a statement. “We are honored by the trust that Alliance is placing in us by selecting us for this rollout. Moreover, our customers have always been our greatest source of new ideas, and at Alliance, we are partnering with a group of forward-thinking people who share our vision for multifamily technology.”

The announcement comes as competition gets increasingly more aggressive in the smart apartment market. Other operators in the growing market include Vivint, offering a service called Smart Properties that lets property managers design their own smart home system, and Entrata, which plans to employ a similar system called SmartProperty across an existing portfolio that includes more than 3.5 million apartment units.

Product Review

Hue who? Nanoleaf Canvas brings a riot of color and vibrancy to the smart home

Fun and festive, Nanoleaf Canvas feature lighting adds personality and vibrancy to any room. Nanoleaf Canvas features squares that you can connect in any configuration you’d like. Sync to music, play games, or relax in soothing light.
Smart Home

Facebook Portal and Portal+ video-calling devices gain new content and features

Facebook's Portal devices are video smart speakers with Alexa voice assistants built in that allow you to make calls. The 15-inch Portal+ model features a pivoting camera that follows you around the room as you speak.
Deals

Best deals for smart home plugs that control your lights and appliances

Smart hubs and speakers play central communication and management roles in your home, but smart plugs let you add lights and appliances to your system. Any smart plug you buy must support one feature or anything you plug in stays dumb.
Deals

Choosing one of these smart TVs under $300 will make you look like a genius

Buying a good cheap smart TV is easier than ever. To help you out, we've sniffed out a half dozen of the best models out there with prices starting at just $130. We've even thrown in a couple 4K smart TVs, with these UHD models still…
Home Theater

Still listening on tinny TV speakers? Try one of our favorite soundbars

You no longer have to sacrifice sound for size when selecting home audio equipment. Check out our picks for the best soundbars, whether you're looking for budget options, pure power, smarts, or tons of features.
Smart Home

Dog or cat shedding? These vacuums do a great job of sucking up pet hair

Got a pet hair problem? Fortunately, there's help for you and your furry friend. We tested out a bunch of vacuums that promise to remove pet hair. Here are a few of the best you can buy.
Product Review

Ring Alarm makes DIY home security simple and affordable enough for everyone

Ring first made waves with its video doorbell, and now the Amazon-owned company is moving on to home security with the Ring Alarm. You can install the sensors and keypads yourself, then have Ring professionally monitor your home.
Smart Home

Rocco wants to rock out. Parrot learns to use owner’s Amazon Alexa

Rocco, an African gray parrot, fell in love with his owner's Alexa unit and ordered himself treats and other goodies, but mostly uses the smart assistant to rock out to his favorite music.
Smart Home

The Echo Wall Clock can help you keep track of multiple Alexa timers

Amazon just released the Echo Wall Clock that was announced at its September new hardware device event in Seattle. The Echo Wall Clock is an analog clock that also indicates the minutes remaining on one or more Alexa timers.
Smart Home

Espresso On Demand: The five best Nespresso machines

Most people still trek down to their local coffee shop to get an espresso or a cappuccino, but you don't have to. A Nespresso machine can put coffee shop quality espresso on your kitchen counter.
Smart Home

This device detects when your pet is at the door and opens it for them

Tired of waiting for your dog to come inside, or running home in the middle of the day to let your four-legged friend out? Wayzn automatically opens sliding doors for your dog and gives you remote control.
Deals

Get electronics gifts for high-tech homes for under $100 with these deals

The holiday season is in full swing with Christmas just around the corner. New deals on interesting, fun, and practical electronic gifts under $100 from major online retailers can convert last-minute shoppers to savvy bargain hunters.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Booze-filled ski poles and crypto piggy banks

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Smart Home

Put away that sponge and let us help you pick the best dishwasher for your buck

Tired of doing dishes by hand? Take a look at our picks of the four best dishwashers currently available and let a machine do the dirty work for you. They’ll do a much better job, anyway.