Chloe and Jérôme Baudet recently moved from Paris, France, to Hong Kong, China, with their 7-year-old son, Philip. Going from a suburban single-family house with a garden to a downtown 60-m2 apartment on the 48th floor was a big change, but the family has fallen in love with the fast-paced life in the Pearl River Delta.
Living on the 48th floor means great views but absolute dependence on elevators. When Chloe and Jérôme go to work or take Philip to school, they often get delayed when the elevator makes too many stops – even if it is already full! Another issue is security: the ground floor hosts a mini-mall, and the lower floors are devoted to offices. Today, however, their lives get more convenient thanks to an unexpected source.
“Put on your jacket, Philip. It’s time to go!” Jéromê says to his son, and locks the door with a key card. Philip runs down the hall to push the down button on the elevator. But he stops and calls back to his dad: “Daddy, what happened to the up and down buttons?”
In place of the old, low-tech buttons, Jérôme and Philip find a touchscreen with numbers and a “G.” Jérôme explains: “Well, Philip, they have installed a new system so we don’t have to wait until we’re in the elevator to say where we want to go. That saves time. Try it for yourself.” Philip hits the G for ground floor, like he used to do inside the elevator, and the screen tells them to go to elevator C.
When the elevator arrives, they enter and notice there aren’t as many buttons. Most notably, however, they make fewer stops and it is no longer overcrowded. When they get down to the lobby, Philp notices new security turnstiles. He looks at them with interest as they leave.
The building manager was faced with several challenges. Tenants complained about long rides in the elevators, but the budget wouldn’t allow for high-speed elevators. Plus, unauthorized people from the ground-floor public mall could potentially access the office space or residential areas of the building. The rising cost of electricity was also becoming an issue.
The manager resolved all those challenges with a single smart solution – by retrofitting an “intelligent elevator enhancer” into the existing elevator system. The smart upgrade helps decrease waiting times while improving building security with personalized user profiles that define who can go where. It also reduces energy consumption since the elevators are used more efficiently.
The investors were happy that the solution could offer a customized look that matches the style and design of the building. It was even possible to add a special button on the touchscreen with the logo of their most important corporate client. Through “VIP Operation,” the company’s employees or visitors enter a PIN code or swipe a card and an express elevator takes them directly to the firm’s reception area.
· 30% more traffic-handling capacity
· 25% less elevator travel time
This feature allows building managers to customize the touchscreen kiosk. Create individual logo buttons on the touchscreen for VIP customers to have one-touch access to specific floors. Special buttons, color schemes, and special designs can be selected on a computer or handheld device. It’s even possible to add custom texts to welcome special guests or offer holiday greetings.
Building managers can optimize building performance and adapt to their tenants’ needs. They can survey traffic and create user profiles that provide or deny access to specific floors. The data collected can be used to make smarter decisions, such as shutting down some elevators during non-peak times.
Today, it’s Chloe’s turn to pick up Philip from school. Back at the building, they grab a few things from the supermarket and head to the elevators. At the lobby, Chloe asks Philip if he wants to scan their key card at the new security gate. “But, mommy, we only use that to open our door!” Chloe explains: “Well, now we use it to get in the elevators, and that makes our home even safer.”
Chloe guides her son towards the security gate where he scans the card. At the top of the gate, there is a screen that says “Happy Chinese New Year!” followed by the instruction “Go to B.”
“Look, Mommy! It’s Chinese New Year! How does it know that, and how does it know where we want to go?” Philip asks. His mother explains: “That’s pretty cool! I bet it knows all the holidays, and I assume it knows who we are since we’re using a personalized key card. That means it can automatically call an elevator for us. But if we wanted to visit your friend, Tommy, on the 29th floor, we could just press the button on the touchscreen over there.”
“Can we go see Tommy?”
“No. We need to get home.”
Elevator B takes them straight to the 48th floor – without hitting a single button.
Before they reach their door, they wish their neighbor, Judy, “Happy Chinese New Year!” and ask what she thinks about the elevator overhaul. Judy also likes the added security at the lobby and comments: “I heard that the system even helps conserve energy, which makes me feel like we’re living a bit more sustainably.”
“Agreed. I’m happy it’s good for the environment and we save time,” says Chloe and they say goodbye.
At home, Philip sits on the couch and looks out the window: “Mommy, let’s go down the elevator again.”
“It’s not an amusement park ride”, Chloe says. “I know that,” Philip responds, “but look outside. The parade’s coming!”
It’s an event they don’t want to miss, so they put their bags away and rush out to take part in the festivities. The elevator gets them back outside in plenty of time to find a good spot to watch the lion dancers go down their street.