At the heart of this is what is known as the ‘gateway’, a tablet computer with a touch display which is set up directly on a socket or a light switch with a special bracket. The light switch doesn’t disappear, but is replaced by a remote control. Initially, this gateway is used to control the heating.
Then only the thermostats on the radiators are replaced. They receive the desired temperature automatically and make it possible to control the heating even when on the move.
A particularly smart solution was found for supplying electricity to the thermostats: an integrated thermogenerator converts the radiators’ heat to electrical energy. So you don’t have to connect electric cables or insert batteries. Otherwise, for a portfolio of our size, a huge mountain of waste batteries and special waste would be created within one or two heating seasons.
In future the new heating control system will not only create heat energy savings. By then the ‘smart home’ solution will be able to do so much more: it will detect whether a window is open or broken. It will become a communications centre and inform you via the display if the rubbish collection times change, for example. Last but not least, it will make the home safer – particularly for seniors. In case of an emergency, movement sensors can inform the gateway if a person falls over at home, for example. The gateway can then automatically call the emergency services. But there is still a lot to do before this becomes a reality. However, as early as spring 2019, we will see smart technology controlling the heating via the new gateway in the first 3,000 homes – centrally at home or on the move.