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Smart Living [May 2012]

Change in lifestyle is occurring on a large scale with technology taking the upper hand and digital accessories entering homes making it smart and comfortable   
Housing plays a crucial role in shaping people’s lives. The design and form of the built environment determines the nature of communities, and influence one’s health and well-being. The metropolitan cities throw several challenges to an individual in a physical world apart from wide exposure to the digital world. This digital experience is not only limited to high speed internet but also includes high definition video, music, seamless communication, electronic security, and connectivity within the community.
Smart homes gaining momentumWith an initiative to integrate technology inside the house and the community with a security and comfort point of view, several developers across the country are launching projects that will depict tomorrow’s living. Recently, the leading real estate developers like Hiranandani Group, Sobha Developers, Mantri Developers and Sunteck Realty launched several such projects across the developed cities Bangalore, Mumbai and Chennai.
The FTTH solutionIn this modern age, the entire world is connected through the web. However, the challenge lies in having seamless connectivity with sufficient space or bandwidth. Copper cables and wireless solutions have their limitations in terms of deployment, bandwidth, feasibility and cost.
One of the technologies to overcome these challenges can be found in FTTH. Fibre To The Home (FTTH) refers to a broadband telecommunication system based on fibre optic cables and associated optical electronics for delivery of multiple advanced services such as telephone, broadband internet and television to homes and businesses. This new communication medium will be provided by optical fibre systems to residential communities and commercial developments by partnering with multiple service providers. Globally, Hong Kong, Japan and South Korea are the leaders in FTTH absorption. About 21 per cent of homes in Hong Kong have FTTH already. The main reason for the huge penetration in Asia is that the Government of countries such as Japan is specifically promoting this technology as a part of their national strategy. United States is strongly promoting FTTH and major providers such as Verizon are moving away from traditional systems towards FTTH. Middle East also has major FTTH users, with all new projects implementing on FTTH backbone. In the European markets, Holland is coming up with a massive project that will connect 1,00,000 homes with FTTH simultaneously. It is pertinent to mention that every apartment at the Commonwealth Games village in New Delhi was connected with FTTH to provide high speed internet and contents from IPTV.
HOH embraces FTTH Of the many firsts in the country in the area of technology for real estates, the House of Hiranandani (HOH) is one of the first to offer multi-player, neutral access FTTH on GPON (Gigabil Passive Optical Network) to the residents of its community.
One of HOH’s current residential projects in Chennai at OMR, is a solution that offers fibre which would transform the way the community, will live, work and play. This modern community of multi-storeyed towers and modern 2, 3, 4, 5 BHK apartments with areas ranging from 1,295 sq. ft. to 3,790 sq. ft. offers amenities and facilities that are a true reflection of a taste for fine living and aesthetics.FTTH offers streamlined cabling system, easy to manage wiring system, moving services from one room to other quickly, without breaking and rewiring, no multiple cables entering into the apartment, smooth switch from one service provider to another without changing the cabling system and dealing with one centre for all service providers for co-ordinations. HOH will be replicating the same FTTH model already implemented at Chennai for the other projects at different part of the country including Bangalore and Mumbai.
Joseph Martin, Vice President (IT), House of Hiranandani, says, "The need for huge bandwidth is increasing day by day. There has to be a paradigm shift in the bandwidth delivery mechanism in the last mile to meet this increasing demand of today and tomorrow. A robust and scalable network with fibre only can fulfil this requirement. FTTH is one of the best available technologies of today to fulfil the requirement of residential and small business segment. This technology will also make sure your home is intelligent, future ready in a well connected community and it will take entire living experience all together to a higher level. While delivering the external services like video, telephony and data; it has a huge potential to deliver many community related services also".
House of Hiranandani has a tie-up with Sterlite for supply of fibre, back-end equipment optical light technology (OLT), and laying & maintenance of communication & IT infrastructure etc. Sunteck takes a step forwardSunteck Realty, in association with luxury mobile phones manufacturer Vertu, announced the launch of ‘Signature Concierge services’ for the residents of Signature Island. Sunteck’s Signature Island, the flagship project of the company is located in the heart of Bandra Kurla Complex, Mumbai. The concierge services will be accessible through the Vertu Signature fit Constellation handset in each apartment and a dedicated 'Signature concierge services’ desk at Signature Island. An ultra-premium luxury project, Signature Island is being designed to be home for top honchos of the corporate world.
Speaking on the announcement, Kamal Khetan, Chairman & Managing Director, Sunteck Realty said, "The fast growing luxury market in India is testament to the fact that India's global traveller appreciate exclusivity and has a penchant for luxurious experiences. Signature Island apartments have been meticulously designed to cater to the lifestyle preferences of its residents and provide unparalleled luxurious living spaces. To give a complete experience of luxury, we started with the best location and engaged the most esteemed and renowned partners to deliver an ultra luxurious project. The association with Vertu reiterates Sunteck's endeavour to bring world-class amenities at Signature Island."
Signature Island residents can access the Vertu's concierge service through a dedicated key on the Vertu handsets, which will be made available in each apartment. In addition to this, the 'Signature Concierge’ desk within the premises of the project, will enable residents to interact with a Concierge representative in person. The Signature Concierge services will provide bespoke 24/7 assistance to the residents.
Speaking on the association, Gordon Watson, Head of Vertu Europe, Middle East, Africa and India said, "The Vertu concierge service is a manifestation of the luxury lifestyle that Signature Island reflects. Our Concierge service will enable the residents of Signature Island to experience exclusive lifestyle without having to actually arrange it themselves".
Mantri Developers jumps into the businessTaking a step forward, Mantri Developers recently announced its collaboration with Cisco to develop new ICT-enabled real estate models ‘Mantri Connected Communities and Smart Homes’. Sushil Mantri, Chairman and Managing Director, Mantri Developers said, “Technology is changing the way we live today. Smart Home is one of the latest offerings from Mantri”.
“This collaboration will help us push the boundaries of innovation to create intelligent spaces. By applying digital technology and digital infrastructures we aim to streamline and enhance operations, reduce the cost of the building and promote environmental sustainability through energy conservation”, Mr. Mantri adds.
Anil Menon, President, Globalisation and Smart + Connected Communities, said “Using the network as the platform and establishing strategic collaboration, we can bring about a renewed and improved citizen experience in communities”.
ConclusionNew modes and patterns of living are emerging to meet the challenges raised by the need for better and more efficient living. Intelligent technologies are transforming common, every-day experience at home as the world becomes increasingly instrumental and interconnected. All these technologies demonstrate the adoption of modern tools that make living smart and easy at the same time.


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