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Innovation and Acquisition: Johnson Controls Expands Vision into AI-infused Smart Building Technology

Smart Building Technology Leader Launches OpenBlue and Acquires Qolsys

Leading smart building technology and controls system provider Johnson Controls has announced it has fully acquired security technology company Qolsys. Qolsys is a leading resident and commercial security technology provider that caters to the Smart Home and Office market. Johnson Controls had a major stake in the company since 2014. By acquiring Qolsys, Johnson Controls further expands its leadership position into the next-gen innovation space for security and smart building solutions.

Qolsys CEO Dave Pulling will become Vice president and general manager of the global intrusion products business for Johnson Controls, which had $500 million in revenue in the fiscal year 2019.

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Before this acquisition announcement, Johnson Control launched a new digital platform of connected Smart Building solutions. It’s called OpenBlue. OpenBlue is the outcome of years of R&D by Johnson Controls’ engineers and data scientists across the world.

At the time of this announcement, Dave Pulling, Qolsys CEO said –

“We are committed to our customers in the security channel while continuing to invest in our roadmap and emerging verticals around the globe. This is a major milestone in our 10-year journey to disrupt and transform the security industry with advanced cloud-enabled solutions that transcend traditional intrusion offerings including advanced automation, energy management, apartment management, building management and wellness for aging in place.”

The combined volume of Qolsys, DSC, Bentel, Visonic, PowerG and Tyco products positions Johnson Controls as the market share leader in advanced security solutions world-wide.

By applying data from both inside and outside buildings, Johnson Controls OpenBlue digital platforms empowers customers to manage operations while delivering safety and security in dynamic and agile environments.

Johnson Controls OpenBlue platform solves the complex challenges arising from the IT and Cloud environments. The company has focused on creating AI-based Smart Home and Security management solution that goes beyond the traditional operation. It brings together AI, Machine Learning, IoT Networking, IT and Cloud applications laced with cutting edge add-on technologies such as Big data Analytics, Predictive Intelligence, integrations and collaboration.

Benefits of OpenBlue Platform

Johnson Controls is targeting the Smart Home technology for domestic and commercial markets. The OpenBlue platform provides:

  • Automated Security Management to switch into different modes based on external and internal situations.
  • Deploy COVID-19 solutions for touchless environments, reporting and security analytics, energy optimization and thermal camera sensors.
  • AI-infused tiered advanced solutions for remote diagnostics, predictive maintenance, advanced risk assessments, compliance monitoring, etc.
  • AI-based HVAC management platform that increases energy-saving and improves the Indoor Air Quality (IAQ).
  • Secured self-service security and access control to meet industry benchmarks in privacy and compliance.

Mike Ellis, Executive Vice President, Chief Customer and Digital Officer at Johnson Controls says –

“This new suite of solutions will enable previously unimaginable outcomes for our customers by connecting buildings to unique software capabilities, providing insight to deliver high customer value. We are partnering with a number of leading technology companies and thought leaders in various sectors to roll-out tailored solutions in the coming months.”

The Future of Smart Home Technology

By acquiring Qolsys and by launching the Johnson Controls OpenBlue platform, the company has ushered in a new era of intelligent homes and offices.

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The future of Smart Home and HVAC management technology is deeply engraved with the current innovations in:

  • AI and Machine Learning
  • IoT-enabled connectivity
  • Embedded Analytics
  • HPC Cloud Computing
  • IT and Monitoring systems
  • Security and Surveillance
  • Real-time Risk management, data privacy and governance

As Gartner puts it, IoT can solve complex IT challenges and business problems that often come in the way of a successful digital process transformation or simply transformation of the good living standards.

Johnson Controls is leading a fundamental transformation of how spaces and places are perceived and enjoyed by balancing and responding to the flow of information, services and people that occupy buildings.

Qolsys’s inclusion would further extend Johnson Control’s OpenBlue technology meet the demands of global customers, dealers and service providers worldwide.

Jeff Williams, president of Global Products, Johnson Controls said – “The opportunity to acquire Qolsys allows Johnson Controls to achieve operational efficiencies and scale across our global markets, while further enhancing the suite of products and services offered on our digital platform, OpenBlue.”

Qolsys recently announced roadmap products including the IQ Hub, a lower-priced, third-generation IQ Panel; the IQ Router, a next-generation mesh networking solution to elegantly address the rapidly complex connected home; IQ Water, a connected water shutoff valve designed for mass-market retrofit; and a fourth-generation IQ Panel due in 2021 with Qualcomm chipset supporting AI, M2M, and next-generation connectivity.

Johnson Controls will offer Qolsys products throughout global markets. The IQ Panel 2 Plus and a full line of security and home automation devices are available from Authorized Qolsys distributors.

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