DistribuTECH is always a great event as there is probably no place on earth where you get to see so many of the world’s smart grid leaders in one place. Last month’s DistribuTECH 2012 in San Antonio was no exception as it was a terrific event for meeting with customers and partners. It really is a who’s who of Microsoft smart grid partners with ALSTOM Grid, ARMOR, Bentley, EMC, Enspiria, General Dynamics – Itronix, Infosys, Intel, Itron, Logica, MobileDemand, OSIsoft, Schneider Electric, SUBNET Solutions, and Telvent all participating.

One of the really fun parts of DistribuTECH is when I clip_image002discover a really cool company for the first time. This happened with a company called Switch Automation which was in the Intel booth at DistribuTECH. Switch Automation provides a cloud based platform for automation and energy management in homes, apartments and commercial buildings.

Switch is a very interesting company and different from most of the other providers in this space as they are cloud based as opposed to being a hardware platform and they provide IP intercom and a full sustainability platform for data aggregation and promotion of corporate sustainability credentials.

Switch’s platform is end to end Microsoft which includes Windows Azure, SQL Server and Silverlight. Why? Because Switch wanted a scalable solution that would meet customer and partner demands anywhere in the world. Switch started with hardware/software solution back in 2002 and realized over time that this model doesn't scale to support their business which led them to switch (no pun intended!) to a cloud based solution strategy that incorporated all lessons learned from 8 years in market.

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Switch is focused on the HEMs market - high end residential, commercial, education facilities, multi-residential, industrial and their solution has been market ready since 4Q 2011 with many customer deployments.

What’s been the key to Switch’s success? According to Deborah Noller, CEO of Switch Automation, it’s been the move to a scalable cloud based platform based on Azure and their drive to provide a superior user experience for their customers.

Switch Automation has posted several YouTube videos that demonstrate their solutions, platform capability and overall direction. I highly recommend that you give them a look here, here and here. Enjoy! – Jon C. Arnold