February 18, 2015
by Stacey Higginbotham
Podcast: Insurers may subsidize your smart home, but which device?
Link to Podcast from Gigaom’s The Internet of Things Show
Hosts: Stacey Higginbotham and Kevin Tofel
Guests: Dan Reed, Managing Dector, American Family Ventures
The wealth of data and convenience a connected home can offer is impressive. Saving energy or adding security are primary reasons consumers are buying connected products today, but businesses are interested as well. One of the earliest industries to investigate the promise of connected consumer homes is the insurance industry, which is looking at the benefits of getting consumers to put water sensors around leak-prone areas or even just add additional security products or better smoke detectors in a home to help improve safety.
In this week’s podcast I spoke with Dan Reed, managing director at American Family Ventures, the venture capital arm of American Family Insurance. AmFam as it’s known, has 10,000 policies and insures homes, cars and small businesses. Reed has invested in several internet of things companies and is looking to make more investment sin early-stage companies, so we talked about what he’s looking for as well as what role the interest of things will play in the future of the insurance industry. Before Reed and I chat, Kevin I answer a few questions from the mailbag and discuss Gizmodo’s terrible experience with the Wink hub, and why it’s such a blow for the industry.