IP

Smart Buildings – More Than Just Energy Efficiency

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The smartest people in the commercial real estate industry agree–if we really got energy efficiency in buildings right using smart building technologies, corporations could save so much money that there would be little need for solar panels or windmills. While most experts are still strong supporters of these alternative energy sources, they agree that extreme energy efficiency measures could have very dramatic positive results.

On the other hand, there are an increasing number of people who are growing disenchanted with the energy efficiency movement. It is not that they are against the idea, it just seems like it is an “all or nothing” proposition, and one of the major aspects of smart building technologies is the impact they can have on OPERATIONS and TENANT SAFETY/SATISFACTION as well as energy efficiency–which solar panels and windmills don’t offer.
In our world of buildings, a world that impacts us every time we enter an office, mall, school or sporting venue, and an environment that requires a great degree of operational support, why totally ignore the operational benefits, financial and human productivity possibilities, and tenant safety/satisfaction potential of intelligent, connected, high performance smart buildings?

This new generation of smart buildings, in which an IT infrastructure is laid on top of a building and every electro-mechanical device is IP enabled and connected with the ability to send data and be controlled, can provide energy savings and a WHOLE LOT MORE. The concept of centralized portfolio control with dramatically reengineered workflow, combined with advanced data analytics and visualization, could have an equal (if not greater) impact on the operational and tenant satisfaction bottom line of a building when comparing energy efficiency and savings.

Building owners care a lot about the costs of running a building. If these state of the art concepts and technologies can significantly reduce operating costs, why not exploit that fact? These details should be included in the overall strategy when cost-justifying the retrofitting of existing buildings. It makes sense to look at every aspect of these intelligent and smart buildings. Go through the front door with energy efficiency but, by no means stop there; operational efficiency and tenant satisfaction will round out the complete justification for making smart building investments.

One small, yet interesting example of this approach would be the management of fire extinguishers. Despite more technology in an iPhone than we had on the first space launch, we continue each month to walk every square foot of our buildings in search of a fire extinguisher with a small paper card attached and a hole to punch. With some pretty basic smart building technology, we can connect those fire extinguishers to a network and monitor them in real time, with almost no future financial investment. This also has a good sustainability aspect, as we are not using natural resources to transport humans in their search for cards to punch.

Another area relevant to smart building technology with a very fast payback is digital signage. Despite the fact that the hardware and technology costs have become very competitive, we continue to rely on analog solutions to communicate information in our lobbies. If you look at the cost and process, with multiple people and methods of getting a tenant’s name up on a lobby sign, it is a very inefficient way to communicate tenant information. In addition to a simple tenant directory, digital signage can also offer advertising (potential revenues), and fire life safety information in the event of an emergency.

Many different areas of a building’s operations would benefit greatly from automation: HVAC, lighting, security/access, energy, fire/life/safety, lifts, water management, landscaping/irrigation, audio visual, digital signage, parking, voice/data and more.

If we truly want to take our buildings to the next level of sophistication and take advantage of all available technologies, then start thinking of the three categories that make a smart building–energy efficiency and conservation, operational efficiency, tenant safety and satisfaction. If we include all of these categories in our financial justification models, it becomes a much easier decision to retrofit and move our buildings into the 21st century.

Shoretel Shoregear Sg-220-t1 Vs. Shoretel Shoregear Sg-220-e1

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The ShoreGear 220T1 voice switch is 1U half-width, and is capable of supporting up to 220 IP phones or 100 IP phones and a T1 line together. Note that the T1 model differs from the E1 only in the type of internet connection they use. T1 is currently the fastest kind of connection by downloading speed in North Marica, E1 stands for it’s european counterpart. These differ in most of the protocols used while up and downloading, but technically results show the speed is quite the same.

Unlike other solutions, the server can be removed from the ShoreTel UC system and the switches will continue processing calls and text messages. ShoreGear mailbox switch models, unified voice mail and automated attendant functionality. As for the voice calls, the distributed architecture ensures that access to the mailbox will not be interrupted if WAN failure occurs. If ShoreGear Voice Switch fails or there is an isolated fault within the network, the phones become transferred to another voice switch that is turned on.

The system is fully scalable simply by adding the switch and does not require a forklift upgrade. Companies can also pass on ShoreGear IP using Primary Rate Interface options to provide cable channels in tandem and in coordination with the number of already existing telephone exchanges. These voice switches are easy to install and can be centrally managed from any web browser. New ports and users will be added by simply connecting them to the already deployed network. Also there is this ShoreWare Director management software that Shoretel offers you with the ‘gear’, it should automatically find new switches added to the system.

Thus the exceptional ease of management will reduce maintenance and management costs and reduce the overall systems costs. Designed for energy efficiency and independently tested ShoreGear voice switch will also help reduce energy consumption and increase ongoing green business. In separate rankings ShoreTel always gets high marks because of it’s superior IP telephony devices. Technological leadership made available dynamic echo cancellation at ShoreTel, buffering jitter and packet loss results in handling of low latency and high quality communications for calls and access voicemail.

ShoreTel offers innovative solutions that help organizations make significant gains in productivity, as employees spend less time interacting with different voice systems and more time together. The ShoreTel UC system allows flexible dialing across the enterprise, call transfer, web conferencing, video conferencing, call management and intercommunication between sites and easy access to distributed messaging discourse.

Since voice communication is the foundation of any enterprise, it has become standard to demand the utmost in system availability. ShoreGear voice switches exceed stringent requirements of todays enterprise IT, providing 99.999 percent (five nines) availability. The processors that are powering voice switches do not need or use mechanical disk drives, eliminating the the most common points of the system bank failure, the voice switches use an embedded real time operating system and unique call control architecture that allows them to communicate with each other and distribute calls while processing it towards the network.

Communicate with ShoreTel ShoreGear SG 220 T1 and ShoreTel ShoreGear SG-220-E1 on IP Phones, IP softphones and other settings using the Media Gateway Control Protocol. ShoreTel ShoreGear voice switches deliver unified communications to organizations of all size, but mostly small and medium enterprises. These devices unify all kids of communication protocols across all of the enterprise locations, support for IP phones, analog devices, and a huge variety of network interfaces.