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Dixons Carphone developing Knowhow button for homes

by Stuart Wilson, Friday 20 November 2015

Dixons Carphone is pushing forward with a smart home monitoring and support service. Steve Moore, connected home director at Dixons Carphone, detailed plans to provide a connected ‘Knowhow button’ in homes that customers could press in case of problems and receive a rapid response. The scheme would allow the retail giant to monitor homes, respond to problems and even put customers in touch with an appropriate local tradesperson if required.

Moore said: “Some people find technology tricky and really struggle if there is an emergency in the home. We plan to launch a service that is designed to help them keep their houses up and running. We have licensed a platform that will allow us to detect problems in people’s homes.”

Home dashboard

Taking full advantage of connected devices and smart home technologies, the proposed service from Dixons Carphone envisages a clear dashboard tracking all the devices in the home, their status and any potential problems or issues.

Moore added: “We’re looking to offer a ‘Knowhow button’ in the home that consumers can press and receive a call back from the Knowhow services team within two minutes. We will have remote access to the systems in the home, but if we can’t fix the problem in the home, will give the customer the chance to book for a Knowhow expert to visit, or choose a local independent and verified expert.”

The idea of a technology support button in the home is not new. A similar scheme was launched by French retailer Darty at the end of 2014. The proposed service from Dixons Carphone takes this concept to the next level by adding in remote access and management, a full overview of technology in each home, plus the addition of the option to call verified local experts.

Building trust

Moore claimed that Dixons Carphone’s approach to the new smart home service has been inspired by the success of its in-store Pin Point service, which allows consumers to easily identify the mobile phone deal most suited to their precise needs.

Moore added: “We want to be really transparent with customers and also make security easy for them. There is much greater adoption of technologies when people understand them. We want to build a personalised conversation based on trust with people in their homes.”

The exact timeline for the launch of the ‘Knowhow button’ and the pricing for any smart home monitoring services from Dixons Carphone were not disclosed. Moore was speaking at the Smart Home Breakthrough conference in London.

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