Chamberlain, the company known for the LiftMaster brand of garage door openers and a commercial gate business (think apartment complexes or gated communities), got into the internet of things back in August 2011 with a connected garage door opener.
The MyQ product is a Wi-Fi gateway and a sensor that controls your garage door from an app and lets you know when the door is open too long. It is a simple idea that has proven successful. People love the security of checking to ensure their garage is indeed closed. The only effort people have to go through when it comes to their garage doors is getting someone like Garage Door Repair Charlotte NC – Tip Top Garage Doors when their doors are looking a bit shabby.
About three years ago, the company realized that it now had a platform that consisted of a cloud service and a lot of data about the state of garage doors. With this, it saw an opportunity to create a new line of business in the commercial realm.
So it launched a service for companies and commercial properties that wanted to understand the status of their loading docks. Information about whether the door was open or closed could help with ensuring A/C wasn’t wasted. It also helped businesses get a perspective on their operations they didn’t have before. Now they can see what loading docks are busy and which ones could be used.
Because Chamberlain built out a cloud infrastructure for the project, it also had the means to offer different types of connected services to other lines of business. For example, it can now offer gated communities or apartment complexes a cloud-based access system that can be reprogrammed from a computer dashboard as opposed to on the physical box by the gate.
Chamberlain also saw a way to adapt its business. Cory Sorice, the general manager for emerging businesses at Chamberlain, says that it is embedding agile development teams in each of the company’s business units, so when managers or customers see an opportunity, Chamberlain can test it out quickly.
Sorice’s role in the company shows how seriously Chamberlain is taking this. Until mid-January, his title was the head of connected platforms, but now he’s in charge of all emerging business and even helping create an incubator of sorts at Chamberlain to work on connected services and products.
Sorice says the company has always thought of itself as being in the access business, but now with the aid of connectivity the range of products it can offer has expanded. He declined to talk about revenue and the anticipated impact on Chamberlain’s bottom line, but before the end of the year, he hopes to have something to report.