Smart Building Technologies: Disrupting the Status Quo

In an article for Realcomm, Navigant describes the role artificial intelligence can play within the commercial buildings industry

Public awareness of the Internet of Things (IoT) and acceptance of artificial intelligence (AI) is prompting commercial building owners to invest further in smart building technologies.

In an article for Realcomm, Casey Talon, research director at Navigant Research, points out that familiarity with connected devices has set the stage for technology-enabled productivity and convenience. Expected buy-in and realization of benefits to the bottom line has primed executive decision makers to explore enhanced alternatives to initial investments in building energy management systems (BEMS).

“Now, more than ever, the buildings industry is set to adopt smart building technologies and AI is on deck to further disrupt the status quo of facilities management and real estate strategy,” said Talon.

In the past, BEMS transformed building operations by improving performance and, as a result, saved energy costs. Now, the evolving energy market can use technology-driven operations to produce smart building analytics that change the conversation with potential customers. Smart building technologies improvements speak to the C-suite in compelling ways, offering metrics tools that track energy costs, space use, and sustainability. The smart analytical tools help executives understand facility management in a broader sense, to drive system performance and investments for long-term strategy decisions.

There is a future for AI in the intelligent building market to reduce the burden on facilities staff and executive decision-makers when translating system diagnostics, prioritized by business needs, into action,” Talon said.

The public’s willingness to welcome AI into their homes, including through virtual assistants, and the amount of their interaction with AI in providing important feedback to the tech industry is helping define expectations of technology-driven capabilities for commercial building owners. AI can transform the commercial building experience through machine learning and self-healing buildings, according to Talon.

Among the key benefits AI offers is that it enables continuous changes in settings and operation of major energy loads and can continually sense and change the environment for comfort and cost reduction.

Although Talon believes it is unlikely that robots will take over for building engineers and facility managers, AI can automate routine processes and boost the value of analytical output.

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