What is your background? How did you get into the Security Industry?
Prior to starting Qolsys I was at eBay for 10 years. I spent a lot of time following consumer trends, including online and the fast growing mobile segment. Not exactly a security industry veteran; however, as customers and casual industry observers growing up in Silicon Valley, we noticed an opportunity to raise the bar in the residential security space. As outsiders we had no preconceived notions of what a security panel should look or act like, except that end users were ready for something more, similar to their smartphones and tablets. By leveraging these consumer trends and re-architecting the typical security state machine into an open compute platform we are able to bring to market an intuitive, attractive and robust solution that looks and acts more like a consumer friendly tablet but designed specifically for the security industry and the growing home control market.
What do you enjoy most about your role?
Starting and building a company is exhilarating and imposing every minute, every day. Internally, establishing our company culture from the start is important; our company name, Qolsys, represents Quality of Life. We take this serious, yet not too serious. We value an active lifestyle, energy, passion and intelligence. We look for these qualities in our people and the people we do business with. Externally, I’m excited by the conversations I have every day with security dealers and our partners. It’s very clear dealers are anxious to embrace new technology and we want to help drive this adoption, whether a dealer ultimately selects our product or another.
What’s your prediction for the biggest trend that will take place in the security industry in 2013?
I think we’re going to see the next evolution of touchscreens and platform integration. There is a bit of a race on to deliver the first 7-inch interface with various radios and features built in. More generally, we’ll continue to see increased end user adoption of interactive services, consumers increasingly expect more from their security and home devices and expect to have complete access and control from their phones.
What is your biggest challenge?
Being new to the industry often times we don’t know what we don’t know. In many cases we’ve been able to take a legacy experience or requirement and present a more elegant solution, meeting the needs of the dealer while providing a more intuitive and enjoyable experience for both the dealer and end user. As we uncover existing industry norms we push ourselves every day to ask “why” followed by “can we do it smarter and make it better looking?” Companies like Apple and Google have raised the bar, on behalf of our dealers and the end users we need to meet the challenge.
What does your organization receive from membership in SIA that you’d like to share with others?
SIA creates a baseline of industry specs and guidelines critical for a new company entering the market. Advocacy will be key role as the broader home control segment bleeds into the security industry. I’m looking forward to our first SIA networking event Tuesday April 9th at Pure Nightclub.
Will you be attending the ISC West show? If so, what are you most looking forward to about the event?
Yes! You only launch a company once; we’ve chosen ISC West in Las Vegas. We’ll be presenting our IQ Panel at the New Product Showcase and showing our end to end to solution in the Bellini meeting rooms.