I recently caught up with Scott Stephenson, Director of Product, Motorization for Hunter Douglas to talk about the company’s smart shade solutions, dealer benefits and the Hunter Douglas difference. Part 1
Maureen Jenson: Hi Scott, most of us are familiar with the Hunter Douglas brand, can you give some background on your smart shade solution?
Scott Stephenson: Hunter Douglas is a leader in window treatments, having pioneered shade styles like the Venetian Blind in 1946, as well as the Honeycomb shade. Our legacy is rooted in innovation, creating new and proprietary window coverings that add distinctive beauty as well as solutions to everyday practical needs, such as insulation, energy savings, light filtering, room darkening, automation, and child safety. We’re known for quality and design, offering homeowners hundreds of customization options in the colors and fabrics to suit their décor, and styles that offer a range of room darkening and light filtering effects.
As the connected home became more popular, we sought a way to take our motorized shades to the next level. Hunter Douglas introduced PowerView® Automation to make our shades smart, and integrated into systems to support entertainment, safety and privacy, comfort and convenience, and energy savings.
MJ: How can the smart shade opportunity benefit dealers?
SS: Automated window treatments are an untapped opportunity for home technology professionals. As homeowners seek the five key benefits of a smart home, convenience, comfort, entertainment, security, and energy savings, automated window treatments deliver on all five. There are two main customer segments: Smart home owners who want the same beauty and design options that they expect from ‘dumb’ shades, and homeowners focused on design who are just learning about the benefits of connectivity. Dealers can benefit by pursuing both groups of consumers, where smart shades can become an upsell and a new entry point for sales.
MJ: What’s different about Hunter Douglas smart shades?
SS: Hunter Douglas automated shades bring more beauty to the category. Instead of just roller shades in a few beige and gray color options, we offer customization to meet each client’s specific lifestyle, design, and technological needs. The Hunter Douglas portfolio contains over 20 unique styles of shades in hundreds of colors, textures, and different room darkening or light filtering effects. PowerView® Automation makes our window treatments smart, where homeowners can use their smartphone, voice command, our Pebble remote to control them, or dealers can integrate the shades into schedules and scenes in a Control4, Crestron, Savant or other system.
With extensive style options, there’s more opportunity for dealers to offer smart shade experiences. For example, Top-Down/Bottom-Up Duette® Honeycomb shades for letting in natural light while providing privacy, and Pirouette® Window Shadings that filter just the right amount of light into the room while preventing glare.
Stay tuned next week as Scott explains the Hunter Douglas Custom Integrator Program, the new partnership with ProSource and what he sees as the future of automated window treatments! Part 2 here.