I got my hands on the latest statistics of IoT button usage–which I’ll be sharing with you few inches below. I thought it’d be a good opportunity to look at the why’s and how’s; what are businesses’ preferences across different industries when it comes to IoT buttons, what are the biggest drivers, and how various industries use IoT buttons.
3 ways to improve efficiency and customer experience
Discussions about facility management and IoT usually veer into “smart buildings” and other capital expense heavy investments; state-of-the-art HVAC control systems, smart lighting, self-diagnosing machines, and sensors that can detect which parts of the building are being used by people.
When creating new buildings, architects and engineers can design everything around these technologies, taking into account their total impact over the building’s whole lifecycle.
But what about existing buildings? Given the structural features, legacy machines, and energy efficiency of many old buildings, the feasibility of heavy investments into new control systems may be questionable. Efficiency and return on investment being the restraints for most companies, easier and lighter solutions, especially ones that can be retrofitted quickly and economically is something worth looking into, right?
Moreover, in a broader sense, the efficiency of your building means much more than energy consumption and automatic lighting control. It’s how processes such as cleaning, maintenance, deliveries, catering and other services for the users are run.
Often these processes are much more important to the users of the building and have a greater impact in your success than any smart atmosphere control systems.
Luckily there are simple things you can do to improve your building’s efficiency.
Selecting the right IoT button to match your needs may be a trickier task than you might think at first. And why wouldn’t it be. There are so many alternatives to choose from. What’s more, all of them with different feature sets.
So where do I start the selection?, you might ask. That’s a genuine concern. And a reason this guide was created.
There’s one thing that 80% of people want when it comes to taxi: they want it right away. With that in mind it should be a simple thing to delight your customers. Should. But simple doesn’t always mean easy.
Alternative user interfaces to improve service
Some like apps. Apps are cool. They can be simple. And they are always on the go. There’s also a drawback: when you begin to collect various convenient apps to hail a taxi, your phone screen gets cluttered with various apps and boom, there goes the simplicity and convenience.
Different taxi companies, fleets and dispatchers have already jumped into IoT button bandwagon to improve taxi service and make hailing a ride quicker and easier.
In the complex and cacophonous forum that the internet has become, your service and interface design are more important than ever. It’s even more pronounced in ecommerce: Simple and convenient user interfaces and customer experience means less friction. That translates to better conversion rate.
Increasing the conversion rate is where alternative user interfaces – such as one-press ordering buttons – come into play. They provide both the tool and an excuse to bypass existing customer journey and competition.
In work it’s usually results that matter, not the act of working itself.
While we all realize deep down that simplicity trumps in all things, our ways of working as well as our tools have become more complex. Various handy apps and cloud services we use every day reside in different corners of the internet. Syncing data and documents, integrating the services and what have you takes time and effort.
Maybe those things are menial – or they seem to be. And getting them done feel tedious with minimal returns. Unfortunately it comes with the job.
According to Les Taxi Bleus 80% of people want a simple thing: they want their taxi right away. With that in mind, one could assume that the easier you make the ordering process, the more customers you will acquire. Plus, with the simple and fast ordering you’ll also improve the customer experience.
Want to make it easy for customers to order products or services from you? Don’t worry, it’s natural.
That’s exactly why bttn was created – to act as a versatile human interface to support customer actions such as placing orders / re-orders and to engage customers in dialogue. Simply put, to improve customer experience.
Today people hail taxis, order heating oil, place re-orders in online stores, request callbacks from customer service and whatnot with simple push of a bttn.
Lots of tiny things are eating away conversion rate in online ordering. As a merchant you know that removing those pain points from the ordering process, making it as smooth and straightforward as possible is at times a big, hairy objective. But in it’s simplicity, it’s all about removing the friction.
You can tweak the design, tweak the copy, improve CTA’s. You can make the site load faster or snip some step out of the buying process.
These are all traditional tools that can provide tiny tweaks to improve the UX and help to remove friction. But if and when you have existing, good customers – let’s call them VIP’s for the sake of clarity – untraditional methods may be what you should be looking for.
Uses the world’s leading provider of IoT connectivity, Sigfox.
Helsinki, Finland & Las Vegas, USA – January 6 , 2017 – The Button Corporation, creator of the world’s first physical push button always connected to the Internet, today launches the new product aimed specifically at companies operating in the US mass markets.
At present connected devices in general remain complicated, expensive to deploy and not easily scalable. The new bttn device sets out to democratize the connected devices market by combining utter simplicity, versatile APIs, cloud based management and configuration toolset, and the leading IoT connectivity technology from Sigfox.
For those short in time there’s a three word answer: everything works out-of-the-box.
With you we can dig a bit deeper into why’s and how’s.
With proliferation of various connected hardware buttons, (at least) we have witnessed all of them offering either Wi-Fi of Bluetooth connectivity.
Most of them are aimed towards home users and–keeping that in mind–Wi-Fi and Bluetooth are sensible alternatives. You want to control something in your own home, and you most likely already have a Wi-Fi network. So why accumulate costs when you can use network you already have.
Bttn and Accolade launch re-order solution for Magento platform
Helsinki, Finland – 25.10.2016 – The Button Corporation, creator of the first physical push button always connected to the internet, bttn, launches a joint effort targeted to online stores with Accolade Partners.
The solution, dubbed Button for Commerce, runs on the leading commerce platform Magento. It brings a convenient re-order functionality that has so far been a privilege only to large brands operating in a major ecommerce store to all online stores.More →
Taxi industry – or yellow-cab industry as it’s more affectionately called in the US – has been challenged by industry insurgents like ride sharing giant Uber. And it’s been a rough ride. According to New York city’s data the total amount of trips fell 8.8% year-on-year in 2015 as ride sharing companies ramped up their services in the city.
Last fall there was a news article about taxis finally trying to beat Uber at its own game. New apps, Arro and Way2Ride, acted as prong in this counter with similar functionalities to Uber: consumers can use apps to hail the taxi online. Simple and convenient? Maybe. Is that the silver bullet the industry is looking for? You’ll be the judge of that. But few questions while you’re making up your mind: More →
Helsinki, Finland & Stockholm, Sweden – September 7, 2016 – Telia, the leading Swedish telco recently launched a new service for its small- and midsize business customers, the Personal Technician, which helps companies with their IT- and communications solutions and makes the technology work.
Telia has teamed up with Bttn to engage businesses around the new service by sending them connected buttons. With a simple push of the button they can sign up to the service and get a Personal Technician. More →
New York, USA and Helsinki, Finland – July 27 2016 – The Button Corporation, creator of bttn®, the world’s first internet connected physical push button, announces certified device integration with Icontrol Networks, the leader in the smart home industry.
From today, bttn is certified and compatible with any Icontrol-powered solution. By pushing the bttn, the user triggers a pre-defined action or chain of actions inside the smart home. Some common uses include:
Push the “good night switch” bttn to lock doors, turn off lights, activate video surveillance, and lower room temperatures for the night. Press the same bttn again in the morning to wake up the house.
Easily activate or disable the security alarm mode with the bttn.
Toggle the living room lighting between normal and TV watching modes.
Check-in bttn for children – press to lock the doors and send an “I’m home” SMS to parents.
The Button Corporation launches the all-new bttn Mini®
Helsinki, Finland and New York, NY– June 1st, 2016 – The Button Corporation, which launched world’s first internet connected physical push button in the Spring of 2014, announced today the all-new bttn Mini®.
Packed with the same magic but half the size of the original bttn®, the new bttn Mini is the ultimate physical signalling device for human beings. With the bttn Mini in the line-up, The Button Corporation keeps delivering on the premise of the simplest internet user interface in the world™.
“We are proud to have been able to pack even more power into the diminutive form factor of the bttn Mini. With two distinct gestures – the press and the long press – the bttn Mini can perform two separate actions. The long press is a feature developed to meet the needs of our business customers to be able to cancel or confirm an action or a purchase, ” says Harri Rautio, founder and CEO of The Button Corporation. “As this is a widely requested feature, we are bringing it also to the original bttn via a simple firmware upgrade,” continues Rautio.
We have always liked to integrate with 3rd party services to leverage the smart things other people have come up with. One of our favorites in this respect has always been Zapier and our services have been integrated for quite some time. However, until now we have been officially in beta.
Starting in the next few days, bttn will be an official Zapier app – in fact we will be one of the very first hardware devices to tightly integrate with Zapier. While you can do a lot of stuff with the bttn even without Zapier, this integration makes things even accessible and easier.
If you thought KONE was a leading elevator and escalator company, you get half a credit. They do all that but what they are really about is creating the best people flow experience.
With that background in mind, we were not surprised – mind you, we were flattered and proud and dead chuffed, but not surprised – when KONE asked us to partner with them for an even better people flow experience in high rise buildings. And partner we did.
The problem Bttn helps KONE solve is the potentially long wait time (up to several minutes) for elevators in high rise residential buildings. And before you protest, no, we are not making the actual elevators faster – we leave that to the hands of the more than capable KONE engineers. But in co-operation with KONE, we are alleviating the problem with personal elevator bttns that do not have to be in the lobby or anywhere near the elevator.More →
The leading taxi operator in San Diego launches a concierge service with Bttn to provide a better way of calling cabs than ride-sharing apps
San Diego, CA – October 27, 2015 – San Diego Yellow, the leading taxi company in San Diego with over 300 vehicles, launches its new Concierge service with Bttn, the world-famous internet-connected push button.
Restaurants, hotels and boutiques frequented by large numbers of customers are repeatedly calling taxi compa- nies to place ride orders. Deploying San Diego Yellow branded bttns to these locations, SDY offers a totally new level of service. Dubbed as SDY Concierge, a simple push of a button sends a taxi order to that address, and then displays confirmation light on the bttn.
Taxi operators have for some years been challenged by internet-connected ride-sharing services. Some of the tra- ditional operators have also developed their own app-based services but studies have shown personal apps do not reach all customers and they’re not the most convenient way for concierge-served customers. Using a bttn to place taxi orders is both faster and more convenient than app-based hailing.
From day one, we’ve had our eyes on the US market for many reasons, but one of them has stood out: we’ve had by far the most customer inquiries and interest from the US. In fact, we’ve had as many visitors on our web site from the US as from the next seven countries put together. (I cannot refrain myself from adding a nice little factoid here: we’ve had visitors from 184 countries on our site. We think that’s pretty darn cool.)
So, it has always been our intention to do something about the US market but we wanted to do it right. While promising, the US market is also tough. So we waited until we knew the product was ready and we had the resources to do things properly. And now, with a fresh round of funding and an FCC certified product, we have started our US operations.
Since late September, we’ve had an office in Brooklyn, NY – a borough of New York City that is as gritty, enterprising, and energetic as we are. Not to mention that the view is pretty great.More →
While both Wi-Fi and GPRS/3G are ubiquitous, they have one major drawback for IoT applications: significant battery drain. Maximizing battery life has been one key design objective for the engineers at bttn.
While we are proud of the battery life figures we have achieved, there is a limit to what we could do with the legacy technologies. When we heard about an attractive new alternative way of offering both significantly longer battery life and guaranteed bandwidth, we jumped at it.
The alternative is SIGFOX, a company that has developed a super-low power network technology especially Internet of Things.
HELSINKI, Finland – May 26, 2015 – Bttn Inc., the creator of the simplest physical internet user interface in the world has chosen SIGFOX’s global network to dramatically expand the reach of its buttons.
Until now GPRS and Wi-Fi technologies have been used to connect bttn, the world’s first stand-alone, connected push button to the Internet. By qualifying its device in the SIGFOX Ready certification program, Bttn is assured the buttons will have optimal radio capacity wherever SIGFOX’s cost-effective, energy-efficient global network is operating.
“SIGFOX’s network, which is dedicated to the Internet of Things, allows us to build buttons that have better battery lifetime and a much lower cost,” said Harri Rautio, CEO of Bttn. “Furthermore, SIGFOX has strong network presence in countries like Spain and France, where we already have business customers in the transportation, elderly care, security and manufacturing industries. SIGFOX’s network connectivity adds a great feature to our great product.”
It is with distinct pleasure that we welcome Amazon to the button game.
In case you have been living in a cave, here’s the latest entrant:
Starting from next fall, Amazon’s Dash Button lets you order detergent or dog food. And you can also… Well, actually that’s about it. We kinda expected a bit more but these button thingies can be tricky! (We know, we took our sweet time to get them delivered but the availability issues are now a thing of the past.)
France’s leading radio taxi operator launches concierge service with Bttn
Helsinki, Finland & Paris, France – March 2, 2015 – Les Taxis Bleus, the leading taxi company in France with over 3000 vehicles in fleet, launches its Concierge service with Bttn.
Restaurants, hotels and boutiques frequented by large numbers of customers are repeatedly calling taxi companies to place ride orders. Deploying branded bttns to these locations, Les Taxis Bleus aims to offer a totally new level of service. Dubbed as Concierge, a simple push of a button sends a taxi order to that address, and then displays a green light at the bttn.
Traditional taxi operators have for few years been challenged by ride-sharing apps. Some of the traditional operators have also developed their own app-based services, as has Les Taxis Bleus. But personal apps are not the most convenient way for concierge- served customers.
Ooh, yeah, you’re amazing!
We think you’re incredible.
You say we’re fantastic,
But still we don’t head the bill.
Amazing, incredible, fantastic…
We are Finns, so these kinds of superlatives don’t really belong to our daily vocabulary. Instead, we like to play it down and not make fuzz about things. Still, these words pop up in my brain when I think back about what a week we had. The whole company history culminated in the past week. More →
bttn – the Simplest Internet User Interface in the World – makes Smart Home even smarter
Helsinki, Finland & Redwood City, CA – September 3, 2014 – bttn and Icontrol Networks today announced that bttn has joined OpenHome Labs and the bttn device will be OpenHome Certified upon launch. As a result, bttn – the Simplest Internet User Interface in the World –will work seamlessly with over 22 Million OpenHome Certified devices already in Homes today, bringing a new level of simplicity and control to smart homes.
The bttn device is just what the name suggests: an internet-connected physical push button. By pushing the bttn, the user triggers a pre-defined action or chain of actions. With both tactile and visual feedback, the bttn informs the user that the action was successful and the desired result reached. Designed by the award-winning industrial designer Harri Koskinen, the bttn is simple, elegant, and durable.
Working together with Icontrol, the platform provider that powers many of world’s smart home solutions, bttn will provide a super-simple addition to smart home solutions, allowing new use cases and making various systems accessible to every family member, regardless of their technical skill level.
Purple Haze was in my brain
lately things don’t seem the same,
actin’ funny but I don’t know why
‘scuse me while I kiss the sky.
Ladies and Gentlemen, Boys and Girls hear this: this is a glorious time to be an entrepreneur. Sky-kissing glorious!
It is often said that ideas are cheap; it is the execution that counts. This is still very much true, but the great thing is that even the execution is cheaper than ever. Developing a technology stack to bring an idea to life is more affordable than ever.
It’s a kind of magic,
It’s a kind of magic,
A kind of magic,
One dream, one soul, one prize,
One goal, one golden glance of what should be
The magic here is not about us – it is about you guys. We’ve had some insanely fantastic suggestions from our fans to the monthly bttn use case competition. We got loads of suggestions and, after careful deliberation we chose the five best. The submitters of these five get not only our gratitude and immediate fame, but also a free bttn each.
Sweet dreams are made of this
Who am I to disagree?
I travel the world and the seven seas
Everybody’s looking for something
We’ve often been asked how we came up with the idea for the bttn. As many of the greatest inventions or services (no, we are not on that level yet but we are working on it) the bttn grew out of a series of small use case discoveries.
The Button Corporation Introduces the bttn, the Easiest Internet Device Ever
Helsinki – May 27, 2014 – The Button Corporation today launched a new category of Internet- enabled devices for triggering messages, processes, and actions without requiring any technical knowledge. Called bttn, these devices help individuals, families, and businesses use the power of the Internet of Everything to make life easier, safer, and more productive.
The first bttn device to be released is just what the name promises: an internet-connected physical push button. By pushing the bttn, the user triggers a pre-defined action or chain of actions. With both tactile and visual feedback, the bttn informs the user that the action was successful and the desired result reached. Designed by the award-winning industrial designer Harri Koskinen, the bttn is simple, elegant, and durable.
Bttn’s initial consumer applications revolve around safety, family communications, and every day convenience. The bttn can also replace numerous existing legacy devices and services, which are inflexible and expensive.
Kajon Oy, a leading provider of chauffered car services successfully deploys the bttn
Helsinki – May 27, 2014 – The Button Corporation is providing transportation request buttons for Kajon Oy, the leading taxi and minibus service provider in Finland. Kajon is providing Kajon- branded bttns for their customers and partners for easy and repeated ordering of rides with a simple press of a button.
Restaurants, hotels, and other businesses frequented by large numbers of customers are repeatedly calling taxi companies to place ride orders. This is both expensive and time-consuming. Kajon now offers them an easy push button to order a ride to a specified address. The service personnel making ride orders, such as reception desks and restaurant door personnel, now save time as they only have to press the bttn. The lights of the bttn inform the client about the status of the order. Furthermore, the details of the order, such as car and order number, are automatically relayed to the service personnel’s mobile phones via SMS.
Finnkino, the largest movie theatre chain in Finland successfully deploys the bttn
Helsinki – May 27, 2014 – The Button Corporation is providing Finnkino movie theatres in-theatre call buttons for audience for improved customer service.
With thousands of people in the multiplexed and fully automated modern movie theatres, it is increasingly important that the patrons have a fast and simple way of alerting theatre staff and receiving assistance, in cases of theatre or audience related exceptions during the shows.
“With its low cost service-based approach, the bttn is an ideal solution for our theatres”, says Finnkino’s Theatre Manager Markku Riekkinen. “Placing bttns in the auditoriums allows us to offer better customer service during the movie presentations. If a need arises, the audience now has a simple method of signaling our staff by pushing a lighted bttn on the wall. The versatility of the bttn concept allows us to implement many more customer service ideas. And should our own messaging infrastructure change, we’ll simply change the messaging options in the bt.tn cloud service. ”