© 2019 by MaGrann Associates

2019 IBS Trends and Observations: The future is smart and looking good

February 25, 2019

By: Laila Reilly, Client Relations Manager, MaGrann Associates

I had the opportunity to attend the 75th Annual International Builders Show in Las Vegas last week. Among the 1000s of vendors promoting their latest and greatest products, materials and technologies, I noticed two trends that I wanted to share with the MaGrann Community related to smart tech and smart communities.

Smart Tech

Product designs are reaching new heights compared to the traditional thermostats. Many of these smart items offer visual and voice controls for occupants to manage their comfort, lighting, security and much more. I enjoyed learning about the Brilliant system and it’s integration capabilities with Next, Ecobee, Alexa , etc., platforms to better manage your home.

Smart Neighborhoods

I also learned about a recently completed project in Birmingham, Alabama that is hoping to become a national model for resiliency and design.

The 62-house subdivision, “is the largest in the Southeast to be connected to its own microgrid, a mix of solar panels, battery storage, and a gas-powered generator. Although part of the Alabama Power grid, the system is capable of supplying the subdivision with all the power it needs should the grid fail or go offline for maintenance.  There’s more to it than energy independence. The houses are equipped with the latest internet-of-things (IoT) technology that will give homeowners unusual control over how their houses operate, and allow Alabama Power to control electricity going to water heaters and heating and cooling equipment” according to Green Building Advisor.

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(Photo provided by Alabama Power Co.)