What to Expect When You're Connecting

Deploying Multi-Tenant Monitoring Systems in Dense Urban Environments

November 17, 2023 Soracom Marketing Season 2 Episode 6
Deploying Multi-Tenant Monitoring Systems in Dense Urban Environments
What to Expect When You're Connecting
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What to Expect When You're Connecting
Deploying Multi-Tenant Monitoring Systems in Dense Urban Environments
Nov 17, 2023 Season 2 Episode 6
Soracom Marketing

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We talk with  ProSentry's founders Nadav and John, discussing their company's development, practical applications, and technological challenges of deploying their connected products throughout New York City multi-tenant housing properties. They talk about their unique system, which leverages LoRaWAN technology (a wireless data communication technology) to detect issues such as water leaks, pest infestations, gas leaks, and more in buildings. The system is capable of alerting building managers within seconds of detecting a problem, allowing for immediate action. The conversation covers how they solved various problems, including the need for multi-carrier support- accomplished with Soracom's technology, the simplicity of their system, and the benefits brought to end users and installation teams. They also explored possible future advancements in their technology and potential new applications for their system.

Show Notes Transcript

Send us a Text Message.

We talk with  ProSentry's founders Nadav and John, discussing their company's development, practical applications, and technological challenges of deploying their connected products throughout New York City multi-tenant housing properties. They talk about their unique system, which leverages LoRaWAN technology (a wireless data communication technology) to detect issues such as water leaks, pest infestations, gas leaks, and more in buildings. The system is capable of alerting building managers within seconds of detecting a problem, allowing for immediate action. The conversation covers how they solved various problems, including the need for multi-carrier support- accomplished with Soracom's technology, the simplicity of their system, and the benefits brought to end users and installation teams. They also explored possible future advancements in their technology and potential new applications for their system.

Welcome to what to expect when you're connecting a podcast for IOT professionals and the IOT curious. Who find themselves responsible for growing executing or educating others about the challenges with connecting products and services to the internet. You'll learn from industry experts who understand those challenges deeply. And what they've done to overcome them now for your host, Ryan Carlson.

Ryan C:

Today on what to expect when you're connecting, we're here with John and Nadav of ProSentry. We're talking about communicating with products across a wide number of networks, locations, and environments. And this is going to have connected products that build alerts and awareness. That's going to be around the protection Trinity, which is like leaks and fire hazards and pests. where do your products exist? And where did the idea come from?

prosentry__nadav_john:

So our products exist in New York city at the moment, although we are already speaking to other states, Canada, other states in the U S we're going down to a big conference in Miami shortly. our goal is to be nationwide and then North and South America. it all came because I had a massive leak in my house upstate in the Hudson Valley. I had various pieces of technology set up to. make sure I didn't have this kind of leak and I ended up with a flood, went on for three days. So Chubb Insurance bought me a,$5, 000 credit to put in a connected valve. I took a look at that and realized... This is a good solution for a single house, but I wonder if I could come up with a solution for a multi tenant building. because, I've owned a company, in New York City with my wife for the last 37 years, building high end residences and apartment houses, and lots of people have ended up leaking on our clients, and we, on occasion, have leaked on the people downstairs. So I thought, what if we could come up with a way to monitor for water leaks? within these multi tenant environments so that rather than relying on the downstairs neighbor watching the water coming through the ceiling and calling up or even two or three neighbors down because people are away. What if there could use this technology to? Connect to the building automatically right away and say there's a leak under the dishwasher in apartment 21J, go upstairs and take care of it. So that was the genesis of the idea.

Ryan C:

so I've worked in laundry and remote, like wireless payment in multi tenant, and that was a really difficult environment to make. Connectivity and things like that work. What were some of the initial challenges that you faced when you were building this product and getting things to work underneath, dishwashers and tubs? And this is not radio friendly material. So were there any other challenges other than just frequencies?

prosentry__nadav_john:

there's lots of challenges and Nadav will talk about a number of them as well. The first challenge is just in a multi tenant environment. You are dealing with, basically a staff, and the staff is they run the castle, and the first job is just to make the staff satisfied. But because we've been working in those environments for the last 37 years, we're good at that. And in fact, that's how I know Nadav. Because he began in property management, I was a contractor, and we met. so the first thing was figuring out a system that a building management team and a building super, the resident manager, could accept. our first system, was a Wi Fi system, which basically we bought off the shelf. but we tried that in a building. And it uses a lot of parts because we needed a Wi Fi hub, and we needed a couple of range extenders, and then we needed a way to connect it to the Internet, and it was all expensive and lots of pieces inside people's apartments. And I think to add to that, what we were looking for was something that would be able to integrate quickly, would be cost effective, and energy efficient. And so that's when we stumbled across LoRaWAN, which enabled us. both to use, a network which is independent, very easy to deploy, not need a lot of equipment. we typically can deploy, one gateway, which is the equivalent of a modem, every two to up to six floors, and get really good coverage. And as a result of using that kind of technology over Wi Fi, we're also extremely energy efficient. So that meant our original devices, we were going to have to enter into people's apartments. once a year to change batteries or have the super do that. Now it was once every 10 years. So that really becomes a game changer. and then by using a third less parts because we don't need all those expensive hubs and range extenders, suddenly our price really dropped. And that is an important thing in a multi tenant space. You have to get the cost down.

Ryan C:

you're leveraging these different types of signals. what surprised you? So Nadav, when you had LoRaWAN and started leveraging this was there specific types of materials or things that you were just surprised like how much easier it made things work or was there like any aha Eureka moments that occurred when you're experimenting?

prosentry__nadav_john:

You mean as far as the connectivity?

Ryan C:

Yeah, from getting all of these things to talk to one another in this harsh environment.

prosentry__nadav_john:

I think for a couple of things, I think, first of all, what we touched before, The ability of LoRaWAN to penetrate between walls, to go between floors. and really being able to, deploy on a very large scale, very easily. The second thing is we wanted the solution to be extremely, easy to deploy from, an operator perspective. And so we're able to do all the heavy lifting behind the scenes in advance of shipping this technology. And all the end user needs to do is really just connect, these gateways to the walls and then automatically everything connects. And it's very seamless. So I think from that perspective, as opposed to again, versus, your typical WiFi solutions, which, you need to connect to a network and search and all these kind of things. But this type of solution, everything just happens very seamless.

Ryan C:

So We're,

prosentry__nadav_john:

still constantly amazed by how few gateways we'll need in a building. and that's really been refreshing. we'll think, Oh my God, we've got this concrete and steel building. It's very broad and still we're able to connect from our gateways to the devices, across two or three floors or even further is amazing, which then gives us the ability to connect via cellular connection to the cloud.

Ryan C:

One thing that I hear consistently when we talk about connectivity is it's not just the end user experience, but there's also the installer and then the setup. So how important is it that you're taking into account the people putting in the products into these multi tenant buildings. Are they your teams? Are they other people? Like, how is it that you're working in a world in which not everyone is an it specialist and they're just really good at mounting stuff.

prosentry__nadav_john:

So when we started, it was my belief that this had to be a white glove service, that we would come to the building, we would install ourselves. but we were frankly reaching cost, pushback from the buildings. And at the same time, we were building our, application so that we could profitably install these devices. So what is exactly what Nadav said when you're in a Wi Fi environment or Bluetooth or a lot of the other protocols, you're using some kind of sinking thing that really takes some training for people. But with, LoRaWAN. It really just connects. It sniffs itself out. It connects. It works much more seamlessly. So what we found is that pretty soon we had built an application that we were shooting device QR codes on the back of the boxes and using drop down menus to make our lives easy. And we realized we made it so easy. We just have turned it over to the buildings and the buildings are happy to install it because particularly in a multi tenant environment, their renters are comfortable with their building's porter coming into their apartment, but they would have had it come with our own installation teams. By making it super easy, now the porters can just install it in apartments on their own schedule, and it makes it much lower cost for the buildings to install.

Ryan C:

So Nadav and John, talk to me about what each of you does on a day to day basis and helping make decisions about this user experience around the engineering, around like finding the right opportunities or problems to solve. what does that look like? Tell me a little about yourselves.

prosentry__nadav_john:

Go ahead, you start, because you do most of the work. from my perspective, first of all, we haven't mentioned this, both john and I come from more boots on the ground experience, right? so john's a builder. my background is in property management, real estate. And so we both come from that kind of background. We both know what's going on in buildings. We both experienced this firsthand. on a day to day basis, I think a lot of what we do is we keep our ear to the ground, right? So we are constantly visiting buildings. We're constantly meeting, you the people who are going to be end users, so to speak. and so while we provide this kind of SAS solution, which is everything goes over the cloud. We're very much also, hands on, boots in the ground. And so we, this morning I went to a site and we met with a client and we asked him how his experience was and how easy was it to deploy and that he need any assistance with anything. And so we're very much, dealing with that in an ongoing basis. And the other aspect is really our partners, right? Soracom as one, Senet is another, we're constantly talking to our partners. and understanding, what advancements they're working on, what you bring to the table, I want to say that one of the, one of the features that, we really enjoy working with Soracom is, the ability to have, a SIM card, working on multiple carriers. From our perspective, that means that when a end user put his hand on a gateway. He doesn't really have to worry about, which carrier he's going to use. Do they have better connectivity here? Do they have better connectivity there? Everything can be done remotely through our mutual portal. and so that really gives a very good end user experience. yeah, that's so Nadav is really working on a lot of it. he is the CEO. So it's the technology. It's managing our partners. My role largely is, in many funny ways, talking to, the building super. I met with the building super yesterday. He loved our water leak detectors, loved our valves, but he had a real problem in that in New York City, you can buy steam from the city. And the city... Blow steam into your building, right? And once you have enough steam, there's a thing called a steam trap. And when the steam finally reaches the end point, where you've filled the building up with steam, that trap senses that the steam is there, and it shuts, and you stop using the city's steam, because you're paying the city for its steam. his steam traps keep... Falling open and the steam just keeps pouring out. So it's like he has a gas filler and there's a hole in the bottom of his tank. And so it's a real cost losing proposition for the building. And in about five minutes, he and I spit ball back and forth. And we realized that ProSentry already has a solution that can monitor that end pipe. Recognize that the pipe past the steam trap should never get hot because as soon as the steam gets to the trap, it closes. Thanks for watching! We realized that if that end pipe starts to get up to 150 degrees, it must be because steam is going there, so we Figured out a solution for his building, so I'm using a lot of my just relationships and knowledge and mechanical and engineering experience to really constantly figure out better ways that ProSentry can work, which then Nadav and I sit together and think, how are property managers going to take this and really come up with a way to do it? And then how can Figure out a way to do it less expensively.

Ryan C:

I love that story because it, what it does is it highlights that the boots on the ground knowledge having, lived or worked in that field. I've been on product teams where they would have engineered and over engineered some sort of new smart cap that would let you know when it pops off, when you had all these other things, when all you needed to do is have a temperature sensor. Just further down on a piece of metal, right? Like you don't ever understand what's really happening if you're just building from a lab rather than going out into the field and seeing how these things are being used, maybe you guys could talk a little bit about some of the engineering roadblocks that you ran into. is there a particular engineering challenge you guys faced

prosentry__nadav_john:

Funny that you should ask Ryan. so here's an example of that. So the first building that ProSentry really worked on is a building on the Upper East, west side. it has a lot of leaks and one of the reason it has a lot of leaks is that it was built in the twenties as a luxury building. It has a series of terraces, about 20 terraces on the building, and during a rainstorm. Leaves will clog some of these terrace drains, but they don't know which ones they're going to clog. The water doesn't, stops going down the drain. It builds up and there's a four or five inch threshold going into the apartment. So once the terrace builds up to four or five inches, it comes into the apartment. It starts to pour onto the floor and eventually it pours downstairs and somebody notices it. Terrible problem. So we thought about how it could be. Engineer a solution. We came up with something super simple, which is this weatherproof box. we put a sensor on the inside of this box. It's not right now, but the sensor goes in here with a couple of prongs here. And the idea is we drilled three holes through the bottom. And so in a rainstorm, the water would hit the top, and as long as the water kept then going down the drain, no problem. But as soon as the water would back up, it goes in through these three holes, hits the sensor, and communicates to the network. And all of a sudden, the super knows to send somebody upstairs right away. To clear out those leaves before the water builds up enough to go inside the apartment. Great. So I set up a demonstration at the building. I get their fire hose. I put this on the ground. I turn on the fire hose. My sensor doesn't go off because it's waterproof. It can withstand a rain. They're like, this is great. And I say, now watch this. And I put a berm around it. And the water starts to build up. And the water goes up. And it goes up. And my alarm isn't going off. And I'm not getting a call from our sensor. And I am very embarrassed. The reason is, this is so weatherproof that it's airtight.

Ryan C:

I was just gonna say it's like a diving bell. Yeah.

prosentry__nadav_john:

Exactly. so we came up with this incredibly high tech solution, which is we drilled a hole on the side. The air comes out, the water comes in, problem solved.

Ryan C:

Oh my gosh, problem solved just by another hole. High tech.

prosentry__nadav_john:

Just another hole. Yes, indeed. Yep.

Ryan C:

yeah,

prosentry__nadav_john:

but those are the simple things, but the bigger things are like this seismic change, seriously, over to LoRaWeb. And the lower wind part was great, but then we still had to connect out to the cloud. And the problem for us is that the buildings are super private. They're filled with people who are suspicious of anything. And so the fact that LoRaWAN can't communicate video or audio is great. We can only do a tenth the size of a text. Okay, fine. But then you want to use my Wi Fi, don't you? And then you're going to get my Wi Fi password, and then you're going to get into my bank records. No, we're going to use cell phone connectivity That solves that problem. But then that's the next problem, which is how do you get the right cell phone connectivity inside a building? And that's why in the beginning when Nadav first had the task of we need to find a carrier, we were trying to figure out which carrier works in every building's basement in New York City. It's not going to work because different carriers have different antenna configurations. And so going with one wasn't going to work. And then if we're sending gateways out to buildings that they're supposed to install, telling them they have to try different cell phone carriers and we're going to check on our part. It doesn't work. So that's why for us, the Soracom solution is so amazing in that you're choosing which connectivity is working and you're doing that over the cloud seamlessly.

Ryan C:

There are sims that can manage multiple different carrier profiles, but you have to choose which one you want to use. And you're like, Ooh, instead of swapping out the sim, you still have to go in and go, okay, now try AT& T. Nope. Okay. Now boot up and try Verizon. Oop, now try, right? versus having a sim that's intelligent enough to just pick the best signal.

prosentry__nadav_john:

I think that's a very important point because, again, ultimately, from our perspective as a company and from a user experience, we want to limit, our engagement unnecessarily, but we also want the user experience to be very good. And so if we are talking to a user and he goes, he has to pick up the phone or email us or whatever and say, Hey, I just. unpacked your equipment and it's not connecting or, now you need to help them troubleshoot or now you need to be involved again. So from our perspective, that's costing us time, it's costing us money and it's a poor user experience. But from a user's perspective, they're getting frustrated. and so having that ability to have something automatically scan and automatically connect really makes the whole experience very seamless. yeah, before we found Soracom, we decided, okay, we'll use one of these that could do three different, and then during pitches, Nadav started to say, and if one of the carriers goes down, we'll just switch automatically over to the other. Can we do that? And then I found out, ah, yes, we do, because now Soracom does that. And so that is, for me, an amazing thing, because in an emergency, Like in a hurricane, you would think, they have bigger problems to deal with. No, they're in their building trying to protect it. Our gateways have four hour backups so that we can keep connecting. But that's when Verizon may go down, and usually it's the strongest. But now we just switch over to AT& T, and we're still telling you that the terraces backing up on the 36th floor go up there right away. Speed during these critical moments. It is huge. That's why, our company, we actually make live operator calls to the front desks of the building. Because as quickly as we can, we're trying to reach people, get the activity taken care of that's going to save the building.

Ryan C:

that's the thing is that responsiveness is so mission critical for what you guys do. it's just like people who are monitoring vibration analysis on motors and manufacturing plants, That motor goes down and you're out thousands of dollars an hour while you're waiting for someone to repair it, because it should be producing products or running something. But in this particular case, instead of it making something, it's destroying things, For every minute it's going by, it's another, how many gallons of water? Or,, what are some of the other things other than just leak detection that you're finding? This early warning system works great for in your market. I'm glad you

prosentry__nadav_john:

I do have props.

Ryan C:

Oh, this is great. Okay, great.

prosentry__nadav_john:

Interesting, you should ask. But mission critical. I have a good friend who owns a high end restaurant in New York City. And he had booked a full restaurant, and it's an enormous restaurant, for a movie premiere for a very prominent movie star. He was super excited until two weeks before that booking, they started construction next door and he called me in a complete panic because he had mice running through his restaurant.

Ryan C:

Oh no.

prosentry__nadav_john:

He called me and said, I don't know what I'm going to do, don't you have mousetraps and when I heard about the these mousetraps connected LoRaWAN mousetraps, I thought that's ridiculous. Who needs that? But in fact, we sent five of these over on a Friday. And all weekend, my phone was going off as we caught mouse after mouse after mouse. By the time of his party, we'd caught 17 mice in these. And again, what's mission critical? Is a mouse mission critical? Yes, if you have a big meal coming, and have rented out your space for hundreds of thousands of dollars, number one. But the fact that we could tell them as soon as they caught a mouse, let them reset the mouse trap and catch another one. And that's what they did. They would catch a mouse, catch another mouse, catch another mouse, catch another mouse. So by the time of the party, we had caught 17 mice. If those mice had been killed with poison, which is the traditional way, which is not going to be as good at catching all the mice, they also all would have died inside the cavities of the restaurant, which would have made a terrible stench inside the restaurant. So instead of using this technology, his guys would know that they had caught a mouse because of the size of the trap. The mouse was caught inside the trap with no tail sticking out. So even the guests didn't know that there was a mouse in a box at their feet. But within two weeks, we had taken care of the problem. And now they're managing it. They are very fond of our mousetraps. They're still catching mice, but it's no longer an infestation. They're catching one or two a week. There are mission critical things, like what you were talking about, the sensors that determine whether something's going to go wrong and break. We're very mission critical on things like water leaks that could cause a water leak down through the building. And we're letting people know right away, just like the steam traps, quick, get down there and fix the steam tracker. Trapper, you're going to lose money. But this is an exhaust sensor. So an exhaust fan on a building, you could install a BMS system. A hardwired system, hardwired to the internet, which would predictably tell you if the exhaust fan on the roof was starting to go bad. It might tell you if one of the belts was going bad. This just checks in every six hours and makes sure there's negative pressure at the exhaust fan so that it's working. Knowing in six hours that an exhaust fan had broken, that's all that you need. So part of what we're trying to do is just being proportional. When this thing catches that the exhaust fans not working, we're probably just going to send a text or an email to the building. They don't really need an urgent phone call. Like when they catch a mouse, most buildings aren't going to want to call to the front desk. But if there's a gas leak, you have a gas leak sensor, that's mission critical. That phone call has to go to the super send them upstairs right away because that's not only going to save costs, but that potentially is going to save lives as well,

Ryan C:

I see that as it's like the different levels of check engine lights. There's the, Hey, by the way, your tire pressure is running low and there is a critical malfunction somewhere within your engine, and that's going to require pulling over and immediate attention. Right now, and I see that, very similar to, we're going to need to send someone up there and take a look at it, or it could just be something as simple as. not even simple is take care of it right away. so one of the questions that I had is we've been throwing around LoRaWAN, LoRaWAN, LoRaWAN, Marsha, Marsha, Marsha, Nadav, how do you explain to people what the difference is when you talk about, Oh, this is LoRaWAN, John, you talked about addressing some of these concerns people have about stealing their banking information, but. How do you talk to regular everyday people and describe what this LoRaWAN solution is in these products? And how is it helping you differentiate?

prosentry__nadav_john:

Sure. Happy to answer that. So generally speaking, LoRaWAN is a communication, so it's similar to Wi Fi in the sense that it's a wireless communication protocol and it streams data over the air. So in that sense, it's very simple to understand if you understand how wifi operates, but it differs from wifi, I would say in two, two major areas, wifi, similar to how we're having a video conversation right now, when we're streaming the data and the voice and the image, we're streaming that over wifi or over the internet. So we can stream very large packets of data to each other. LoRaWAN is exactly the opposite. So in other words, it's streamlines very small packets of data. and so you're unable to do these kind of things, which, some people may look as a disadvantage. We look at it as an advantage because it means We can't, record people, we can't, record them speaking, we can't record them over video, you can't use it to hack into someone's system just by the time you would stream all the data you would need to be impossible. so that's one, one component of it. The second component is, the ability to stream over long distances. many people know Wi Fi from their homes. And depending on the size of your home, depending if you have, one bedroom, two bedrooms, two floors, I don't know how big your home is. so typically you would need a modem and a router, right? But as you get away from that modem and router, maybe your walls are a bit thicker, maybe there's a turn. and so as you get further and further away, your connectivity levels go down. Certainly if you go to your neighbor's apartment, or if you go up or down a couple of floors from your apartment, you're connectivity. Lorawan is exactly the opposite in that sense. it's able to communicate these small packets of data, but. along very extreme and long distances. if you're talking about outdoors, it can go from miles inside a building, of course, because there's brick, there's mortar, there's walls, there's glass, you name it. it obviously affects the signal, but we're still able to communicate, very long distances. What that ensures from Our perspective, other than the deployment, which we talked on earlier and how easy it is to deploy, across the building and also ensures that even if you put a small sensor in some far distant, area within an apartment or within a building or within a store or wherever the solution is that you're trying to. John just mentioned about, mousetraps. You may want to put those in the basements or if you're talking about, the exhaust fans. So that goes up on the roof. You want to make sure that all your devices are consistently communicating because we all know that moment a device won't be connected that's when something's going to happen. That's when you're going to have your leak. That's when you're, Your mechanical equipment is going to fail, and so you need to make sure that's connected all the time. So that's really the advantage from our perspective around this kind of communication. Of course, there's always redundancy, so we'll install a couple of routers. But because it's so easy to deploy, and you don't need that much equipment, you're able to have coverage across your building on you're able to cover multiple devices.

Ryan C:

So are there any other technologies or different technology choices or paths that you wished you'd had considered earlier, someone from the future got on a time machine and visited your past self and you should have really thought about this. What would that person be saying from the future?

prosentry__nadav_john:

I think that we're at the beginning of this industry, like this technology was only conceived of in 2009. It only was commercialized in 2016. It's still young. So this technology is all about its constant evolution. And people, because of the LoRaWAN Alliance, the LoRa Alliance, they basically turned over this intellectual property to the world and said, Come up with good devices and the world has responded by coming up with amazing devices. This is a water leak detector that has a 10 year battery life and looks like popsicle stick. Super attractive, easy to and install. Fantastic. Do I wish I saw this earlier? Yes. However, when we first saw this, it didn't pass our rigorous tests. So one of the things that I've learned over this journey is that We're in this alliance, this group, and the group has self policing mechanisms. like this device, we sent it out back to Senet and told the manufacturer, work with Senet, and there are issues with connectivity. When we try to put it on our system, it falls off. Wi Fi, we don't want this. And so they worked with Senet, figured out what the issues were, and now it's certified and working. the same with the LoRa Alliance, we'll certify a device to work on the standard. I wish I hadn't spent the time that I did on Wi Fi, but in fact, I don't know that the LoRaWAN, universe was quite ready. until just a couple of years ago when we migrated on to LoRaWAN. So right now I feel like there's this rich community of people. And quite frankly, our partner like Senet has been great about pointing us to good ideas. Chubb Insurance, has been great about pointing us to new technology. Everybody's constantly meeting in the LoRa Community and exchanging ideas, and we're all excited about a world where this can save a$54, 000 loss in a New York City apartment. That's the average water leak is$54, 000. And this is going in, including the gateway for$65 bucks. Like what could be better than

Ryan C:

I agree. I hear that the insurance company is a source of innovation for you. Talk to me about that relationship and how that's helping create a, part of that business feedback loop or that.

prosentry__nadav_john:

Right after this conversation today, a senior vice president from Chubb is coming to our office, and she was the first person I met at a gala. I was sat next to her, and she and I, while the gala was going on, were having a very excited conversation about leaks. I had just had my leak at my house upstate. We were insured by Chubb. They were great, and I had this idea about a leak protection business. She, it just turned out, was in charge of the war on water in New York City for Chuck. Her job was to try to figure out a way to get buildings to put in a system. Their challenge was that while there were solutions, they couldn't penetrate the building managers. And I said, guess what? I have taught at Columbia at that point for 15 years now, and I have invited in as guest lecturers, most of the building management companies and many of the building engineers from across the city. So those people I know, so as we've launched this company, we've always had the standing within the community of real estate professionals. that what we're talking about, and Nadov is the same way, Nadov for 10 years was at First Service Residential running their luxury property division. That portfolio. We understand what goes on the building. So when you're trying to get into a multi tenant environment, what Chubb needed is somebody with the standing that we could get into those conversations with the buildings to convince them that this was a good idea. This is a new technology. It's not part of the building's budgets. And right now we're seeing a convergence as the insurance industry now is starting to say, this technology exists. We're not going to continue to insure you as a building until you put in this technology because a$54, 000 loss against the$65 sensor, it just totally makes sense to put in. And I think the other part of that is that because, this is factual across the board, in almost every industry, in insurance, premiums are going up, whether it's homeowners insurance, whether it's buildings insurance, whether it's constructors risk, premiums are going up because losses are more extensive because insurance carriers, either need to choose, What they want to ensure, or they just have to because their costs are going up. And so they are turning more and more to technology in order to solve this. we're seeing this with fires, we're seeing this in industries where we're not even involved in and so using insurers and understanding from insurers where their losses are and how we can provide solutions from a technology perspective has been extremely helpful to us. And it's not just, so for a building to adopt it, and this is what we're really finding now. The insurance companies are putting pressure on them to put in water leak detection. Great. But then the buildings have a choice. This is going to be a major investment in a technology for the whole building. What should we think be thinking about in the future? Because water's great now, But am I going to regret choosing the company I chose four years from now? And that's where a company like us, we're a full stack integrator of these solutions. So we're not a solution provider that makes this device and then has an app to monitor water from this device. We're a platform that you can put on this device or this device, whatever devices you might need now and in the future. solution providers might have an automatic valve. Typically, they're just a one inch valve appropriate for a house. Our valves go all the way up to eight inches right now, and we're heading towards 12 inches with specialized protocols so that when they open, they only open 20 degrees at a time controlled by the building's manager so that you don't cause a new leak by turning on the valve. It's that kind of things that really help the building say, okay, I need the water leak for the, for my insurance. But whenever I have a water leak, I also have to get a valve that's 20 foot in the ceiling. I don't want to get on that ladder anymore. I want to just turn it off for my phone. ProSentry does that. I also have a mouse problem, and I'm going to get some mouse traps as well. So suddenly, It's an integrated solution that then they feel 10 years from now, ProSentry is going to keep having new innovations. They're going to source from around the world. They're going to test them and that technology is going to work.

Ryan C:

I'm hearing that you're getting to democratize all of these. Different solutions that are all operating off of that LoRa standard. It's making it so people are future proofing. So as new types of sensing and new types of on premise, computational machine learning, who, whatever, A little black box that solves a problem, That's what these things in essence, start turning into,

prosentry__nadav_john:

That's the critical part. Because right now, if you go to a building resident manager, Anywhere in the country and you start to talk to them about A. I. or there are wonderful app. You're going to start to see them get not all of them, but many of them are going to get uncomfortable. And that's what's interesting I think about what we've done here is that we've realized we need to be super simple. And that means in a time of emergency, You don't have to remember the name of ProSentry. You don't have to remember your password. We're going to send you a text within 15 seconds, and if that's too high tech, we're going to make a call to the front desk or to the resident manager within 60 seconds, and if they're struggling in English, we're going to switch to Spanish. It can't be easier than that, because in that moment, seconds matter, as you said, getting somebody up as fast as possible to 21J and stopping that water is what it's all about.

Ryan C:

I'm hearing an extreme commitment to customer centricity. that is a leadership principle at a company like Soracom as well, where it's, you have to put the focus on what is it that they need? Why do we implement this feature? Because this is the problem they're struggling with. And it's usually because they told us they needed it and here's why. And would other people also struggle with this same deal? So this is a really refreshing conversation because there's so many companies. That start with an engineer, we solve a problem in a really cool engineering way, but aren't thinking all the way down through the end line of will people adopt it, where's the pushback going to be coming from and do we have the credibility to actually get the solution implemented and start telling that success story. What advice would you give to others that are building connected products where they've got an idea? How could they learn from where you've been?

prosentry__nadav_john:

I think, it's a couple of things. I think for starters, you always have to be with your ear to the ground, right? And that leads with what we started off of, being boots in the ground, being there, leading from experience, talking to people. Understanding, whether it's customer centric or whether it's just understanding what your clients needs are. I think that's a start. The second thing is really, to be out there all the time and see what other technologies are out there, what's evolving, what's trending. what are the things that you need? And I think the third component to that is choosing the right partners. Soracom, when we try to choose, we met with your competitors, we have to name them, but we met with them and I think ultimately, what we liked the most being a technology solution is. First of all, your platform and everything that you offer, and also, the ability to be flexible and to do, the other things that we wanted to, and that's just across the board with all your partners. I think, it's impossible to be able to provide a solution independently. you're always in the world of technology, you're always relying on other layers. So the other part is really being able to choose the right partners. we've done that with you. We've done that with Senet. and so I think that's a really big part of the decision process. And then I think we've been working with solution providers lately because they're coming to us and they're saying, here's our device. What would we need to do to sell them to you? And we're saying, look, it's got to be certified by Senet. It's got to be, if possible, certified by the LoRa Alliance, because they're going to work out all the bugs to make sure that it's works and is stable. Because that's the number one thing, if it doesn't do that, it's useless, which also means it's going to have to be on more away. But then quite frankly, this technology lets you pack a lot of features into one. In other words, I want a leak detector, but on it I also want temperature and humidity sensors, too. Because then, at every one of these places, if they've left the heat off and the window open, and the temperature's going down, I'm going to be able to call that super at 50 degrees and say, Hey, somebody left the window open in apartment 21J. They can run up there, close the window, turn on the radiator before they ever had a frozen pipe, before they ever had a leak. So putting as many features into technology without making it too expensive, it's an interesting thing. We're working right now on development of a really cool device, and we are meeting with that, developer almost every two weeks. They're showing us where it's going. We have modified what it looks like, how it connects. We've connected them to Senet. And it's getting to be something incredibly exciting. So yeah, give us a call. We're here. We want to hear what you're thinking of building and we'd like to put it on our platform if it solves the needs for our buildings.

Ryan C:

There's a short sightedness that occurs when you're building out these products. When the cost of goods on adding just a few more pieces of silicon to add additional data points, additional types of sensing, that data may not have a use right now, but it sure as heck could have more value in the future, when you start, you can put these scenarios together of humidity plus temperature drop and then there's a leak. You might know, this could be something different, right? you can just anticipate some more of these solutions. And we see this with smartphones today with the number of people get access to more and more of the sensors, people never thought like what you can do with an accelerometer right now, there are, there's just even cell phones can even tell if you're getting sick based off of movement and gate and temperature and there's just so much that you can do with just onboard hardware, you may not know the problem you're solving today. But again, by putting your ear to the ground, just going in the field, talking to people, you know what, I do have a solution for that. I just didn't know it yet, but I do, it's something that we've got over on the shelf over here.

prosentry__nadav_john:

And quite frankly, if anyone listening to this podcast right now has a good bed bug detector, we're listening for you. we've been trying to get a good bed bug detector. There's no reason not to have it. Come on, you guys, you're inventive. Let's get it over to us.

Ryan C:

any final thoughts from the two of you of things that, what the future might hold for ProSentry and. what's on the horizon.

prosentry__nadav_john:

I think you've touched it, right? I think that's, your final point was really where things were going, I think today you look at a lot of. homes and I think smart homes, which used to be this kind of luxury thing, only people with a lot of money could make, smart homes, or it could control your lighting or your temperature. And, today. it's built into half the devices you already have, if you have, your iPhone or your Amazon or whatever, it's really easy to connect all these things and to do that. And so I think we are doing exactly that just on the building front, which I think is an area which, is developed maybe from a very, traditional building management system, it's a lot of wiring, costs a lot of money. But I think today, as technology advances. As hardware becomes a lot cheaper, as hardware is being developed as solutions that, just john and I, by meeting with, you know, building superintendents, building engineers and understanding what their needs are. I think that's where things are heading. I think that's where the future is, really making buildings smart, making buildings connected, and using different solutions, which are going to be long lasting. And so I think that's where things are headed, at least from our perspective. I think if you talk to anyone, they will have a story about either themselves or a friend who had a water leak that ruined their house, wiped out their family photographs. If you think about motorcycles, how do you tell how much gas is in a tank? You have to open up the tank and you wiggle it back and forth to see how much gas. that's ridiculous. That we're waiting for a person to notice that there's water coming out of the ceiling. Whoever's home. Oh, that's three floors down. No, it's five floors down. So we need enough water to fill five floors before this system works. The only impediment to that is just people's resistance to a new expense. We recognize that it costs money to put in these systems. There is the cost for monitoring. But it is going to save much more than what it costs to install. So we're just at that point right now where this, people are hearing about the technology. The insurance industry is getting behind us and saying, Wow, you can do this for this price. Everybody needs to do it. And it's going to become part of the rental market. It's going to become part of public housing. A child growing up with visible mold is 700% percent more likely to develop asthma. why don't we just catch the leak as soon as it's happening, send somebody upstairs and end the leak. So we're at the very beginning of a smart home revolution, which is based on low cost monitoring with 10 year batteries and building. So we're just super excited to be here, to have partners like Soricom and Senet and the LoRa Alliance to really push this forward and push it home with a bunch of great partners around the country and the world. We're making amazing devices for us.

Ryan C:

I love it. this reminds me of the insurance industry for automotive as well, with the little devices where people get that good driving discount for opting in and having the little plugin, right? Oh, okay. Prove that you're a good driver. We'll give you a better rate. Just put it in your car. I don't know if you've

prosentry__nadav_john:

happening today already. a lot of carriers are already offering discounts for, these type of devices you install inside your houses. We're seeing that right now. John mentioned it earlier. We have, buildings who have contacted us and said, listen, if we don't have your system in our building, it's not even a matter of a discount. It's a matter of having insurance coverage. insurers are not taking that risk. And, I can understand that. Why would you not want to avoid damage, even if a pipe may burst, there's nothing you could do about that, but having a pipe burst and having the ability to catch that within seconds as opposed to within minutes or hours or days sometimes. and so having that ability to, curtail those issues early on, is a very important feature. And I think we're going to see that more and more.

Ryan C:

Lovely. Thank you so much for your time, gentlemen.

prosentry__nadav_john:

Yeah, it's been a pleasure. Thanks, Ryan. Thank you, Ryan.

Ryan C:

I have one final question. What is Soracom to you?

prosentry__nadav_john:

Soracom is the way that we connect to the internet. It's the way we push all of the data up to the cloud. And then from the cloud pushing all of the commands back to our devices. It is the highway to our platform, which can jump across carriers so that it never goes down. And I think I'd just add to that as innovation, right? I was involved in this a bit more, but I think really going through the process and seeing, all the competitors out there, I mean, ultimately Soracom, You don't install the antennas. you're not the carriers. One of the things that you do is you enable us access to these carriers. But there's so many different creative ways to do that. And so I think one of the things that I've enjoyed the most, in the beginning, and certainly now, as we deploy more and more, of these gateways, as it's becoming more and more difficult to manage, all these different SIM cards across the country, data levels, how do we do these things? And so having one centralized place, is really a huge advantage and I think Soracon is constantly thinking about doing this. There's so many other features that we have not even, started to even think about how we take advantage of, whether it's, the security of the communications or otherwise. And so, like ProSentry I think, my impression so far from Soracom has really been, you're always looking, you know, they are on the frontier, you're looking for, innovation, you're looking for ways, to improve, to be customer centric. we were talking about that. and so that's, that to me has been the experience so far. And that's why I think, you guys are a great partner in a specific area where, we couldn't manage without you. it's been great. It seems also like you guys had the same idea about business rather to be a high profit in a niche, to be a broader solution at a low cost because you've really helped bring our costs down and we really appreciate that.

Ryan C:

It seems that we've got a lot of the same leadership principles, I think at heart that drives why we do what we do. And it's exciting to work with like minds. this is always a pleasure.

prosentry__nadav_john:

Agreed.

Ryan C:

This has been another episode of what to expect when you're connecting. Until next time.