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Imagining a Universal Tech-Support Platform for Smart-Home Pros

Can a merger of Control4 and SnapAV, with industry-leading Ihiji and OvrC remote-monitoring platforms, yield a ‘central monitoring station’ model for smart-home pros?

Julie Jacobson · July 02, 2019

Selling from the Field: Why Isn’t it a ‘Thing’?

Technologists in the field could be the best sales and customer-experience assets in a home-tech company. Are you exploiting them?

Julie Jacobson · June 10, 2019

JJ Opines: What if Local Integrators Collaborate, Not Just Compete?

Julie Jacobson: Car-rental companies share passenger vans, parking lots, rental facilities, signage and often personnel. Why couldn’t local home-tech integrators do the same?

Julie Jacobson · April 19, 2019

JJ Opines: Make our Industry the Smartest Again

CE Pro’s Julie Jacobson: The custom home-technology sector invented “home automation” more than 30 years ago, but we haven’t kept up with the technologies and business practices that define smart-home deployment today.

Julie Jacobson · December 05, 2018

JJ Opines, August 2018: Struggling with Sonos, Genius of Sony, Charlie Kindel

This month’s Editor Notes from CE Pro’s Julie Jacobson, opining on Sonos, Sony, Samsung Bixby, Kaleidescape, and Emerald’s acquisition of CE Pro.

CE Pro Editors · August 31, 2018

That HUGE Story on Secretive ‘Amazon Home Security Services’

CE Pro’s Julie Jacobson conjures up “the big story” on new Amazon Smart Security Services, including an army of licensed alarm installers, Amazon’s own central monitoring station, Ring and Zonoff-inspired smart-home services, Amazon Key and more. (Spoiler: She was wrong.)

Julie Jacobson · April 27, 2018

Smart Home Pros Kill ‘em with Coddling, when Customers Just Want Convenience

All those rich people who purchase smart-home systems and big TVs on Amazon … are they “not your customers anyway” or do they just want a simple buying experience, a la Uber and Amazon?

Julie Jacobson · April 10, 2018

20 Smart Home Technologies Way Ahead of Their Time

Home Automation and home entertainment products that coulda shoulda woulda had a longer life span, if only …. Remember Kenwood Sovereign Entre? Frox? Premise Systems? WebTV? Philips Streamium?

Julie Jacobson · November 30, 2017

GAFA and the Future of Smart-Home Pros: Big IoT Will Make Us Different, Not Worse

IoT initiatives by Google, Apple, Facebook and Amazon will forever change the smart-home landscape, providing new and different opportunities for professional installers serving the 99 percenters.

Julie Jacobson · May 30, 2017

On Millennials, DIY, Smart Homes, Professional Installation and the Business of IoT Things

It’s not that Millennials and other with-it customers want cheap; they just want smart home solutions that are simple and convenient. Will traditional custom installers meet their needs, or will Millennial-run start-ups own the market?

Julie Jacobson · November 02, 2016