Crestron again made a substantial impact at the annual CEDIA Expo (Custom Electronic Design & Installation Association) in Indianapolis last week by announcing several initiatives that show an appreciation for next-generation technology. They expanded their line of architectural speakers, launched a line of motorized shade and drapery systems and unveiled a new, simplified programming tool for their home-control systems.
The most innovative announcement from Crestron was the introduction of their “airConnect” technology. Using Near Field Communication (NFC) technology, the system triggers personalized commands to lighting, shading, entertainment and temperature controls with a simple tap of a NFC enabled smartphone. The weak link for airConnect is the acceptance of NFC, which is currently only available on certain Android-based smartphones. Crestron promises that support for other systems will be added as they enable NFC capability. The most amazing part of the announcement was an upcoming software update that will enable existing home-control systems to work with airConnect after the installation of NFC tags behind wall keypads and faceplates.