Mr Khoong Hock Yun, Assistant Chief Executive Officer Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore Welcome Address - Connected Homes Media Tour, HDB Hub

Mr Khoong Hock Yun, Assistant Chief Executive Officer
Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore
Welcome Address - Connected Homes Media Tour, HDB Hub
Singapore, 29 October 2003

Ladies and Gentlemen,
Members of the Media,
Good afternoon to all of you.

Connecting the Homes CFC Well on Track

1. As envisionaged in IDA's Connected Singapore masterplan, we see infocomm technology as a key enabler that brings together the power of computing, communications and content. It can be used to unleash the potential for individuals, organisations and businesses to become more productive, and creative, help enrich people's lives and create new business value. It is with this vision, that the Connected Homes Programme was launched, enabling homeowners to be connected:

  • within his home
  • to and from his home, and
  • within the community.

2. Such a home brings together a multitude of intelligent appliances and communication devices where a suite of broadband content and services can be accessed. This provides homeowners with a wholly interactive and user-friendly experience that allows them to stay connected anytime, anywhere, to work, learn or play.

3. Earlier this year, IDA has awarded 5 consortia under the Connecting the Home Call for Collaboration as part of the Connected Homes Programme. It brings together industry players across the value chain to develop innovative and integrated solutions for the home environment. The five consortia which undertook this one year of developing and piloting of connected homes solutions are:

  • UniHome led by UniGi;
  • MyStarHome led by LG CNS;
  • World@Home led by NCS;
  • HomeGenesis led by Airgateway and
  • Home AXS led by AXS Infocomm.

4. The last consortia - Home AXS however has requested to withdraw from the CFC because they were unable to meet the project timeline due to technical difficulties.

5. Nevertheless, from the word "go", the rest of the consortia have been busy developing, implementing and deploying their solutions. In fact, some have even gone on to commercialise their specific products that are more market ready. As of today, I am pleased to announce that all the development work on the products and solutions have been completed. The consortia have rolled out their solutions to over 400 trial households, which entail a good mix of HDB flats, condominiums and serviced apartments across Singapore. Most of the consortia are in the third month of their trials. Some of these trials will be ending in December whilst others will be completed by March next year.

6. The Connected Homes trials have generated quite a bit of interest and some of our media friends had requested for an interim update on the progress. We have therefore organized this media tour in response to your requests.

7. On the overall, the Connecting the Home CFC is well on track in its progress and development terms of the targets we set out to achieve. In fact, we have exceeded most of the targets that we have set out to achieve: -

a. Firstly, the consortia have developed 35 new applications and solutions, exceeding the original target of 30 that we have promised. These connected homes solutions range from data communications, home entertainment and automation to home security.

b. Secondly, we had set out to create 40 new high-skill jobs at the onset of the trial. To date, 70 have been created, and these people are gainfully employed in challenging work. Besides jobs, the projects had also attracted additional investments. As a show of confidence in the work done by some of the consortia members and the Connected Homes concept,

  • I understand that close to S$5 million worth of investments were injected by some of the consortia's overseas investors;
  • In addition, two companies in the MyStarHome and HomeGenesis consortia - LG CNS from Korea and Portus from Australia have also set up their operations here in Singapore.

c. Thirdly, our goal was to enable companies to commercialize their products and solutions through the CFC. Some of the companies have already done so even in the middle of the trial. For instance, I was told that:

  • The Water Place condominium in Tanjong Rhu, has adopted the UniHome Portal, the UniSecure home surveillance solution, and the "UniGateway" integrated home automation module and "Pronto Neo", a connected homes device for their residents;
  • In addition, "Unisecure", a home security module by the UniHome consortia, will also be made available to the consumers by the end of this year;
  • NCS, the lead company of World@Home consortia, has also introduced part of their connected homes solutions - The MMS visitor alert - to The Pier Condominium at Robertson Quay

d. Lastly and most importantly, another objective we had for this CFC was to enable companies to develop exportable solutions and grow our industry's external wing. Local companies in the consortia can tap on their International partners' contacts and networks to expand into overseas markets. Some have already started to make some headway in that direction.

  • NCS, the lead company of World@Home - After their successful experience with the Pier Condominium, they will be exporting their solutions to property developers in China by 2004; and
  • HomeGenesis, which also has plans to roll out their solutions in Australia by second quarter 2004. These solutions include a security and surveillance package, coupled with a residential gateway provided by Portus.

8. Revenue projections for the products and solutions developed under the Connected Homes trials have also been encouraging. Seven companies among the consortia projected that they will be able to generate at least S$30 million in infocomm revenue within the next three years from the Connected Homes solutions.

9. This optimism is echoed by recent reports published by various research houses. Cahners-InStat group projected that worldwide home networking market will grow from US$1.8 billion in 2002 to US$5.3 billion in 2007. Also the residential gateway market is projected to increase from US$125 million in 2001 to over US$5 billion in 2006.

The Next Phase

10. To help our companies further hone their products and solutions, IDA will be conducting a Connected Homes Consumer Behavior Analysis of the trial households at the end of the project. This feedback will help the industry as a whole, to gain a better understanding of the market demand, so as to continue to innovate and evolve their solutions, and refine their business models.

Your Tour Today

11. What started out as a concept and a vision has now been translated into real applications that you can now touch, see and interact with today. The tour that we have organised for you will give you a feel of some of the solutions developed and see how they are used. Although a few of these products and solutions are already in the market, not all of them solutions are at the same level of maturity. Since we are in the pilot and trial phase, I'm sure there is still room for refining and improvement.

12. Most of the consortia have not determined the pricing structures for their products and solutions yet. They will be gathering feedback from the trial and perhaps disclose their plans closer to their commercialisation. As for those that have been commercialised at this point, we are pleased to note that UniHome's UniSecure home security module has kept its price range as low, between as S$100 - S$200. We will keep you abreast on the progress six months from now when the trials and behavior studies are completed.

13. In order for you to get a good feel of the different solutions available, we have planned 3 tour-stops for you today,

a. Starting off with a HDB setting. That is why we are meeting here at the HDB Hub. MyStarHome and World@Home consortia, led by LG CNS and NCS respectively, have been selected to showcase the solutions they have implemented at the HDB e-Home segment. This will give Singaporeans an idea of what a Connected Home is like. You are amongst the first to see this eHome as the HDB gallery was officially opened just this morning.

b. After this, we will move on to Philips Electronics to see their UniHome showcase. Philips has constructed this showcase to provide inspiration to their partners for the development of Connected Home solutions.

c. As the finale for our tour, we will visit the World@Home solution at Grand Cairnhill service apartment. This shows a "live" implementation of how the Connected Homes concept can be applied to serviced apartments in Singapore.

14. Let me now invite all of you to enter into the world of Connected Homes.

Enjoy your journey. Thank you.


Last updated on: 13 Mar 2023