Savant Readies In-Wall iPhone/Touch Dock

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New York - An in-wall iPhone/iPod Touch dock will join Savant's selection of in-wall iPad docks that use an app to control Savant's Apple-based integrated home-control system, the company said here during a dealer conference.

The company also said that over the next six months, it plans to phase out its own brand of in-wall touchscreens that control its home-control system, called Rosie.

Earlier this year, the company shipped

two in-wall iPad docks/chargers

, each at a suggested $500. They flush-mount an iPad into the wall, with one displaying the iPad horizontally and the other displaying it vertically. In either case, the iPad can be removed from its recharging dock for handheld use. While in the wall or in a user's hands, the iPad uses Wi-Fi to control Savant's Apple-based integrated home-control system.

Here at the dealer conference, the company also announced plans for a wired iPad in-wall dock due later this fall at an unannounced price. The new dock will use Wi-Fi to control Savant systems but will fall back on a hardwire connection to a Rosie system if the Wi-Fi network fails, a spokesman said.

Also in the fall, Savant plans to ship an in-wall dock for the iPod Touch at a suggested $200. It will use Wi-Fi to talk to a Rosie system, but a version with wired backup is planned to ship sometime after the CEDIA Expo at an unannounced price, the spokesman said. Although Savant already offers a home-control app for Apple's iPhone and iPod Touch, the company plans a new app for use with docked Touches/iPhones, the spokesman added.

Savant has promoted its home-control app for the iPad as broadening the customer base for integrated home-control systems, partly by reducing costs but mostly by boosting ease of use for consumers. iPad prices start at $500 compared with $3,000 to $6,000 for dedicated in-wall home-control touchscreens with 7-inch to 12-inch displays.

The iPad's lower price gives dealers an opportunity to sell more iPads into an install compared with the number of dedicated home-control touchscreens they could have sold, the company has said. Customers' money will likewise be freed up to purchase advanced services, the company said.


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