Planet Innovation has launched a new connected device business, Zen, to a much anticipated and oversubscribed IndieGoGo campaign.
Zen is a new smart home thermostat that allows you to control the temperature of your home from your smart phone. Planet Innovation and its development partner MMBNetworks, chose to launch Zen Thermostat on the crowdfunding platform IndieGoGo to help gain immediate and broad feedback from a real user base and the response was overwhelming. Zen reached its $50k goal in less than 5 days.
Arctern Ventures describes Zen Thermostat as the ‘Nest Killer’, in reference to the Nest smart thermostat that was recently purchased by Google for $3.2b. PI describes Zen as simply, ‘the thermostat that people have been asking for’. Its main point of difference over other smart thermostats on the market is its simplicity. While Nest and others introduced an attractive thermostat to people’s homes – they also introduced a world of complexity which many people struggle with.
Zen’s approach is to take much of the smarts out of the thermostat unit on the wall and place them in the phone app.
Here’s how TrustedReviews described Zen’s ease of operation:
It’s smart, so you can control it from your smartphone, but it doesn’t come loaded with useless features. Instead, the LED screen shows you info like the temperature and Wi-Fi connectivity when needed.
It’s simple to use, too. Just touch the screen to wake it up, then use the left and right arrows to switch between heating, cooling, and controlling the fan. The up and down arrows let you set the temperature.
Looks like Nest has some stiff competition.
ConnectedWorld praised Zen’s technical approach:
Zen is an open system incorporating Wi-Fi or Zigbee. It works using iControl’s OpenHome Labs, or other smart-home systems, such as Apple’s HomeKit. Designers used this format in order to have the thermostat work with as many devices as possible.
Michael Joffe, the leader of the Zen business, plans to use the remainder of the 30 day campaign to achieve new stretch goals and gain further market feedback on the product.
Zen is an example of the connected technology that Planet Innovation is creating to advance a range of global industries including biotech, home health and smarthome.
To read more about Zen visit zenthermostat.com.