Five technologies that will increase comfort of residents of multi-dwelling buildings
In the future, the latest technologies and automation solutions will significantly change the life of the residents of multi-dwelling buildings. According to IT Head of Civinity, the group of companies of administration of dwellings, Justinas Klemka, the dwelling maintenance sector is quickly embracing technological innovations that will increase the comfort and awareness of residents and are expected to make some services cheaper.
Justinas Klemka observed that five technologies that are invading the market of administration of multi-dwelling buildings received the most attention during a recent exposition of maintenance of buildings and infrastructure that took place in London.
Possibilities of facial recognition
Any resident has probably experienced the feeling when they come home from a shop, their hands too full of grocery bags to take the key out to unlock the door or enter a code. How comfortable it would be if the door could recognise you as you approach and unlock itself! This may happen in the near future. Facial recognition technology has achieved a high level of accuracy; a few years ago facial recognition system created by Facebook was equal to human ability to recognise faces. The new iPhone X, that recently entered the phone market, also unlocks the phone by recognising the user by their face. Cameras with a facial recognition function most probably will be first installed in airports, stations and other public buildings and territories for the purpose of safety, however, it is only a matter of time when solutions that could teach your stairwell door recognise a resident and unlock the door for them will be created.
As drones are becoming more technologically advanced, we can expect them to perform even more maintenance functions. For example, producers are already proposing drones that are able to take thermovision image of a house, in order to identify open places of a house that leak heat. Such photographs would be particularly helpful for residents of renovated multi-dwelling buildings: in creating projects of a house renovation, drones can be used in order to perform an accurate 3D visualisation of a house and later on, after the renovation project is implemented, drones and thermovision cameras can be used to check the quality of renovation works, document the change in thermal resistance. Other sensors are created with which drones could be equipped, for example sensors of gas leak, etc.
Drones will replace lifts and cranes in the field of maintenance of multi-dwelling buildings, at least when it will be necessary to quickly perform primary inspection of the upper parts of a building, such as the roof, the ventilation equipment, rainwater pipes, antennas, etc. In majority of cases drones allow for a faster, safer and cheaper identification of a problem, therefore eventually they will be a more attractive solution and they will allow administrators to carry out the service of technical inspection more effectively.
The use of various sensors in the industry of buildings’ maintenance will become particularly attractive because thanks to them big data will be generated, which will create background for data analysis, quantity insights and new technological solutions that will allow reducing the need of human workforce in the future.
Electricity/water meters, which, connected to network, send the consumption data to the service provider, are also becoming more popular in the Western Europe. This makes the daily life of a resident easier because they no longer need to write down the indicators of the meter. In Lithuania, we also have implemented examples of such meters, they serve their purpose, are convenient for residents and service providers, therefore it is likely that these technologies will continue to become more and more popular.
Smart sensors will also send precautionary notifications on possible emergency breakdowns. Sensors will also help capture certain problems before they are noticed by residents. For example, if the pressure in the water pipe drops, an automated notification will be sent to a company of maintenance of dwellings, the specialists of which will be able to immediately come to the place of emergency.
For example, the sensors in a boiler room will automatically document a maintenance worker that has arrived, they will read the parameters of electronic equipment and the employee will mark in their tablet point the condition of equipment and, if necessary, works that need to be carried out. In real time the information will be transferred to the self-service system, by connecting to which the residents will be able to see the information and to follow the condition of the checked device. It will allow residents to be better informed about the activities of the administrator of a dwelling and let them know when the planned maintenance was carried out and what problems were identified. Such solutions will also increase residents’ confidence in the administrators of dwellings.
One of the biggest current problems is that residents do not know enough about the activities of the administrator of a dwelling, it is difficult for them to control whether the maintenance of a multi-dwelling building is carried out properly and on time. Technologies will also help to solve these problems. A great number of start-ups, that create various digital sensors used for automatic documentation of arrival of the dwelling maintenance crew and the works that they complete, presented themselves at the exposition of technology that took place in London.
Moving to mobile environment
Residents will also become more mobile; in the West, self-service of administrators of dwellings is already moving to smartphones, we will also see the same tendency in Lithuania. Administration companies will create mobile apps convenient for residents, by means of which they will be able not only to find the information submitted in real time and concerning the house, its latest inspection or planned works, but also to register breakdowns, to communicate directly with the Manager of the house and to order additional services related not only to the maintenance of the dwelling.
To this day in the field of administration of dwellings many protocols are still being prepared, there is a lot of paperwork regulated by laws. However, these processes began to change, the routine work is replaced by automated IT systems and crews that carry out the maintenance of multi-dwelling buildings are slowly becoming mobile, parameters are now being documented by tablets.
Smart cameras and virtual reality glasses
Virtual reality equipment is not a new thing in the market, but in the field of maintenance of dwellings in order to redesign the environment next to a multi-dwelling house by creating more convenient and cosier space for residents, they may be used for the purposes of visualisation of the environment, for example, for virtual tours of the area and presentation of change in landscape.
A separate pavilion at the exhibition that took place in London was destined for video cameras that are becoming increasingly smarter and smarter. “Residents of multi-dwelling houses see cameras firstly as the solution for increasing safety. Now, they more often can be seen next to newly built multi-dwelling houses, however we get inquiries from residents of old multi-dwelling houses, usually they want to improve safety in the yard and in parking lots”, said the IT Head of Civinity. However, cameras and more precisely equipment of video data analysis are becoming increasingly smarter and smarter. For example, in commercial or public buildings they can count flow of visitors, meanwhile in multi-dwelling houses they are installed not only for the purposes of safety of residents and their assets, but also in order to assess the quality of services provided by the administrator, such as the speed of response to calls, the frequency of services of cleaning of the house and cleaning of the environment.