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Tado, the German startup selling a connector kit to make your heater smart, now offers a service to customers that will preemptively check their heating system ahead of the cool days of fall, seeking to warn consumers of a problem before they need the heat. Tado calls the service Cares, and will offer it for free to existing customers.
As [company]tado[/company] describes it, the service will run a diagnostic on a customer’s boiler during the late summer months and notify the homeowner if anything is wrong, so the homeowner can get it fixed before the cold arrives. Tado will also link the homeowner to a professional who can fix the boiler to make the process as seamless as possible. In this situation the homeowner wins and the repairman does as well by filling in a quiet time on his schedule with repairs ahead of a seasonal rush (although in Texas he would be just as rushed fixing air conditioning units right now). This is exactly what companies like [company]GE[/company] and [company]Cisco[/company] are promising customers as part of their industrial internet efforts, and it’s high time the home starts getting some of that same love.
I like tado’s approach here for a variety of reasons. It’s offering real value to a consumer, even if it’s value that the consumer is likely to take for granted. Unfortunately unless you have experienced this issue of waiting a few days without heat as the mercury drops, this may not be a service you even realize you need. It’s hard to charge for this type of preventative maintenance or help, but it does offer a link to another revenue model, hooking up competent repair services with needy customers.
It also showcase the benefits of connecting you home. If you can imagine a home where a water sensor detects a leak and shuts off the water or merely notifies you, or if your fridge warns you that it is losing the capacity to cool down before your ice cream or steaks thaw, then you can see the value of these systems in our lives. Of course, then you might not ever have that awesome family memory of huddling around the fireplace for two days because the heater died or the Thanksgiving dinner that turned into a Chinese food run after the oven failed to turn on, but peace of mind may be worth it.