Don’t be misled by the name for Hunter Douglas’ PowerView Gen 3 line of shade controls… the new line is much more than just the next generation, it’s a completely revamped and rebuilt system built on a different communication protocol.
The Pearl River, N.Y.-based manufacturer says PowerView Gen 3 makes it easy for professional integrators to quote, specify and install its motorized shade products, eliminating the common pain points integrators experience when dealing with the shades category.
“We’ve listened closely to integrator feedback over the past several years, and our focus in creating the next generation of PowerView products remained clear from the start: Provide the design-forward approach Hunter Douglas is known for, with reliable technology that can be executed and integrated with ease,” says Scott Stephenson, director of product, motorization at Hunter Douglas.
“PowerView Gen 3 Automation is precisely engineered to break down the barriers and reduce the learning curve associated with specifying smart shades.
The result is a thoughtfully designed system that is as simple to use as it is to install; scalable for any size project or budget; and reliable for any application or shading type whether that is custom draperies, oversized verticals, or ever-popular cellular shades. The Hunter Douglas shading portfolio and PowerView Gen 3 provide custom integrators a distinct solution that they can build their business upon, while complementing their existing lighting, entertainment, and control offerings.”
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PowerView Gen 3 Product Line Includes Gateway Hub
The original PowerView automation platform debuted back 2015 and Gen 2 was an evolution of upgrades that came out in2017.
“Gen 3 is revolutionary, not evolutionary,” says Stephenson, who notes it has been in development since 2018. The biggest change is the communications platform itself. The original PowerView and Gen 2 were both built on a proprietary RF protocol. PowerView Gen 3 is built on Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE).
The new BLE communications technologies provides an increased operating range and improved reliability with features such as real-time, two-way communications. Hunter Douglas emphasizes the BLE protocol streamlines the installation installation process regardless of whether integrators are installing a single shade or whole-house shade systems. Moreover, BLE means more efficient use of battery power.
The system was beta tested by more than 200 integrators in the field, and according to Stephenson 90%+ of the integrators reported the new Gen 3 was more intuitive and quicker to set up. he says a typical three-room, 10-shade setup that would have taken a technician 45 minutes in the past to deploy can now be done in 15 minutes on the first installation, and only 10 minutes thereafter.
Technicians can modify shade limits and establish favorite positions quickly and easily. The system has built-in common names for the shades and the room locations that previously had to be typed in
As part of the company’s efforts to make the new product line more integrator and homeowner friendly, Hunter Douglas says its PowerView App offers users and dealers a personalized dashboard that enables fast and easy customizable configuration capabilities.
Some of the app’s customizable features include proximity detection that shows the nearest shade to the user, as well as quick-tap naming and scheduling options. Once the setup has been completed, integrators can then transfer the newly programmed app functions to their clients.
Other components within the PowerView Gen 3 series of products include a Gateway Hub that facilitates Hunter Douglas shades into third-party control systems from top manufacturers such as Control4, Crestron Home and Elan, all with two-way control capabilities.
From a service standpoint, dealers can remotely access the system and create schedules and see the status of the shades.
With Gen 2, the system first had to be connected to the network to set it. As many CE pros know, that often required asking the homeowner for their Wi-Fi password.
The new Gateway is a pass-through device that does not need to be online initially but can communicate to the home network after setup. Moreover, the Gateway is not needed for small jobs because with BLE there is now direct communication with the individual shade.
Hunter Douglas notes the system provides voice-control options with enhanced natural language processing for use withGoogle Home and Amazon Alexa.
In addition, the PowerView Gen 3 line of products includes the company’s Pebble Remote.
The stylish remote control is engineered to provide all of the benefits of a Hunter Douglas shade system through an easy-to-use remote control.
The Pebble Remote is offered in a choice of colors, and the global manufacturer adds that through its product portfolio, integrators, interior designers and homeowners can choose from dozens of styles, as well as hundreds of shade fabrics. Hunter Douglas’ shades range from its AERC-certified honeycomb styles, to its classic Roman shades. The company will continue to sell its PowerView Gen 2 products for six months.