‘We unite top talent, partners and products to make lives more enjoyable, connected, and secure in a connected ecosystem’.

Adam Merlino, Vice President & General Manager at Snap One APAC, provides insights into the brand’s evolution and growth. He discusses the latest advancements in audio, video, control, and networking solutions, along with a focus on AI-based surveillance integration with Control4 and other notable developments.

How has Snap One evolved and grown as a brand since its inception? What key strategies have contributed to the brand’s growth, and how do you plan to build on them in the future?

Snap One as a business was built for professional integrators by integrators! As a company, Snap One set out to simplify the access and availability of products required to implement Smart Living experiences in the home and business. Today, we have taken our business to the next level as we design, manufacture, and distribute smart living solutions for homes and businesses to make life better–all installed and supported by trusted professionals worldwide. Our mission is simple: We bring together the best people, partners, and products to make lives more enjoyable, connected, and secure in a connected ecosystem that can be trusted, monitored, and updated as needed over time.

As a company, we are committed to providing Partners with leading products across all major categories, including Control4 and OvrC remote management solutions, Araknis enterprise-grade networking gear, Luma and ClareVision security and surveillance systems, Binary MoIP media distribution products, 230V WattBox power control devices, Strong racks, Wirepath wiring, and theater-quality speakers and audio components from Episode and Triad — as well as support for DANTE audio and DALI lighting. 

During the CEDIA Expo, Snap One unveiled cutting-edge developments in audio, video, control, and networking solutions. Could you provide more details on these advancements?

Our Product team is simply the best! CEDIA is one of many launch platforms for us, we continuously introduce new products and platform enhancements to ensure deployment efficiencies for our Partners. Additionally, we release software updates to improve end-customer experiences throughout the year. CEDIA 2023 saw the introduction of no less than two dozen new products! 

On the Control4 side, we introduced the CORE Lite bundle designed for single room installations; Smart Home OS 3.4, primarily released for end customer refinement and empowerment. For our Partners we introduced a new feature called “customer handoff” which ensures privacy for the end user and protection for our partners. We first introduced this feature with our exclusive line of Luma NDAA-certified surveillance platforms deployed via OvrC.

Triad had a massive refresh with all new designs which improve performance and aesthetics, we released the all-new Triad 4 & 8 zone amplifiers with 25% more power and a five-year warranty, all-new Triad subwoofer amplifiers with the ability to maintain full power for 1 full minute – this is UNHEARD OF! And the long-awaited update of the Triad streaming amplifier with 200w x 2 full-bandwidth, HDMI ARC/eARC support and extensive DSP controls.

Araknis Networks had a massive release with multi-gig networking products. From routers with 2.5Gb LAN to WAN, to 2.5Gb-10Gb network switches and our Wi-Fi 6 access point family. This release was key for our next evolution of our Media over IP (MoIP) solution from Binary. The Binary MoIP family delivers 4K60 4:4:4 and HDR video distribution plus advanced audio downmixing capabilities. When joined in a system with a MoIP 960 Transceiver or Receiver and one MoIP Controller, you get a highly scalable, flexible IP media distribution system delivering visually lossless 4K60 HDR (HDCP 2.2 compatible) video. OvrC remote management allows for quick system setup, easy troubleshooting with access to live screenshots of source streams, and simple firmware updates.

Can you offer additional insights into product lines such as Access Networks, Episode, Luma, and Araknis within the Snap One portfolio?

In general, all Snap One brands are designed and engineered to work together in a connected ecosystem that is anchored by Control4 and that includes Access Networks, Episode speakers (including our new Landscape speakers and  Episode 70V commercial amplifiers and MoIP amplifiers), Araknis’ cutting-edge switches and WAPs that offer up to 10Gbps speeds, Luma’s expansive X20 family of NDAA-compliant surveillance cameras and NVRs, as well as the new Luma Insights platform integrated with AI, and the value-centric surveillance and security solutions offered by ClareVision. Each of these brands can be integrated with the Control4 system.

The acquisitions of Access Networks, Staub Electronics, and Clare Controls have significantly impacted the company. How has Snap One benefited from these acquisitions, and what advantages do the buyers gain as a result?

Currently, Access Networks is available only in North America, as we look ahead we would like to offer this product family in Asia Pacific. 

The Clare Controls platform is a logical expansion of our product platform to include security-centric Smart Living options.  It is currently available in North America only. Our product team is reviewing what is required to make Clare One internationally compatible.

The acquisition of Staub in Canada was an ongoing strategy to build our “local stores” in North America. A local store is a place where a Snap One partner can shop a wide range of our products and distributed products. 

In general, the addition of new brands to our portfolio expands the range of solutions that can be connected to the Snap One Smart Living ecosystem.  This in turn creates exciting new options for the end user customers we serve to create more robust and reliable experiences in their home or business and major new business growth opportunities for our Partners.

Can you provide information about Luma Insights, particularly its AI-based surveillance integration with Control4? How does this integration enhance the overall capabilities and functionalities of users?

Luma Insights was engineered to enhance a Control4 Customer’s surveillance experience by delivering highly anticipated features, including cloud-based video playback from Control4 user interfaces such as touchscreens and apps, and dynamic surveillance-based notifications that are more intelligent, personalized, and rich with contextual information. Luma Bridge is the hardware device, empowered by the Hailo-8 Al processor, that enables our new Al surveillance platform: Luma Insights. Luma Insights leverages that platform to add Al capabilities, like image recognition and automated surveillance notifications, to Luma X10 and X20 IP cameras and the Control4® Chime Video Doorbell. Insights also provides 7 days of cloud storage for event-triggered snapshots and video clips and enable cloud-based video playback through the Control4 Touchscreens and Apps. And as we continue to develop our new AI platform, keep watch for new capabilities and innovative surveillance features made available through Insights. Insights is easy to install, using only OvrC® to configure and deploy directly into a Control4 OS 3.4+ system in about 3 or 4 steps and with no additional programming necessary. Luma Insights is the perfect solution for professional installers who want to offer their customers a cutting-edge security solution for new or existing systems.
Control4 recently released OS 3.4, touted as a much-needed update to the user experience. Could you elaborate on the key enhancements and improvements that users can expect from this update?

What possibilities exist for KNX and Control4 integration? How can users benefit from the combination of these technologies, and what features does this integration offer?

KNX is a longtime partner with Control4. The KNX offering is fully integrated via our ETS importing tool with the Control4 platform and user experience.

At the upcoming ISE Show, we will be placing a major emphasis on demonstrating how our support of and integration with KNX, through the Control4 platform, creates major new opportunities for Partners throughout the world.  The continued integration of KNX with our solutions is a major focus point for our company.

In India, how many dealers are actively working with Snap One, and what are the company’s plans to engage with the design and build community in the Indian market?

Snap One is represented by our distribution partners in India. The go-to-market strategy by both companies considers the design and build communities. Where possible, myself and my team also participate in these events. 

Have any specialized product lines been introduced specifically for the Indian market?

At Snap One we take a global approach to our product releases, I am pleased to say that one of our manufacturers in the lighting category is an Indian-based company.

Looking ahead, is there a specific area within home automation or technology that Snap One aims to explore in the future?

Looking ahead is part of our DNA at Snap One, technology advances at an alarming rate. Fortunately, our products and platforms are constantly evolving through software enhancements and hardware activation. Naturally, AI and voice are high on the agenda.

What recent innovative products has Snap One introduced to the market, and how do these offerings distinguish themselves from competitors?

As mentioned, we release many products… our big differentiator is our platforms Control4 Smart Home OS and OvrC. Smart Home OS provides the end customer experience, OvrC is a deployment, management, and maintenance tool for the professional integrator. OvrC enables no less than four subsystem configurations, therefore maximising efficiency! As for innovation, the Luma Surveillance Bridge with AI was recently announced. This AI platform is owned and managed by Snap One, therefore ensuring customer privacy, the functionally announced on day 1 is the start of our AI journey. Araknis Wi-Fi can be deployed via a few clicks of a mouse, Luma is deployed and configured through OvrC, you no longer need to log into every camera or the NVR to set up! Wattbox intelligent power setup and configuration and our MoIP solution is a breeze when utilised with our Araknis 10Gb switch. One-click of a mouse followed by the ports being used is all you need for an initial setup.

In adapting to evolving technology trends and consumer preferences, how does Snap One incorporate these changes into its strategic planning?

Snap One and our product team are constantly aware of evolving technology trends. We have a strategy, and we incorporate technology when it’s for the benefit of our partners and, ultimately, the end customer.

Anticipating future challenges, how does Snap One plan to address them, and are there specific market trends or emerging technologies that present growth opportunities for the company?

Every business faces challenges, but also opportunities and threats that can align with our strategy. When that happens, we act quickly and decisively!

Our product development and management team are constantly looking at cutting-edge technology and working closely with our partners globally to improve end-customer experiences and refine deployment and management processes for greater results. 

Click here to read full December issue – https://www.smarthomeworld.in/magazine-december2023/

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