iRule Acquires OEM Customer On Controls to Enhance Dealer Support
iRule, a maker of home automation software that starts at $100, has acquired On Controls, an OEM partner that serves the professional installer market exclusively.
iRule, which makes affordable, cloud-enabled home automation systems for both do-it-yourselfers and CE pros, has acquired On Controls, one of its OEM partners that caters to professional integrators (press release).
The acquisition enables iRule to better serve pros with a dedicated group within the company.
“It will allow more margin and more revenue for dealers,” says iRule CEO Itai Ben-Gal in an interview with CE Pro, adding that the company will have a dedicated product line for pros.
Currently iRule has both a DIY and Pro version but consumers can buy the Pro version. The acquisition enables iRule to offer a professional automation and control solution for dealers only, On Controls, while still selling the iRule product direct to consumers.
“We were serving two masters,” says Ben Gal. “Now, we have a whole bunch of features added that are dealer-specific. We wouldn’t give them to DIYs because they don’t even make sense for them.”
While OnControls does use iRule as its engine, the company has more device drivers, for example commercial videoconferencing systems.
Sure, the iRule Pro product will see some changes such as different graphics, “but the key is to be able to better serve the dealer base with a protected line and simpler SKUs – like all you can eat price.”
Currently, spec’ing out a rich control system requires customers to select and pay for a wide bits and pieces of software from a large menu of applications.
On Controls Managing Director Steven Scharp will stay on with the company as a senior consultant to help grow the brand.
On Controls home automation powered by iRule
Julie Jacobson, recipient of the 2014 CEA TechHome Leadership Award, is co-founder of EH Publishing, producer of CE Pro, Electronic House, Commercial Integrator, Security Sales and other leading technology publications. She currently spends most of her time writing for CE Pro in the areas of home automation, security, networked A/V and the business of home systems integration. Julie majored in Economics at the University of Michigan, spent a year abroad at Cambridge University, earned an MBA from the University of Texas at Austin, and has never taken a journalism class in her life. She's a washed-up Ultimate Frisbee player currently residing in Carlsbad, Calif. Email Julie at [email protected]
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