Exclusive: What makes a space smart?


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Switched on Space is facilitating the adoption of cutting-edge technology for safer, smarter cities.

Switched on Space is a UK distributor of PropTech and smart solutions. Founded in November 2020, during the height of the pandemic, we launched to fill a gap we perceived for smart solutions within property.

Security innovation

COVID has been a catalyst for security innovation, as we witness the digital transformation of brick-and-mortar buildings, combined with increasing safety and security concerns. These new markets are embraced and fully integrated into Switched on Space. Through strategic partnerships we identify and curate best-in-class PropTech for daily property problems, such as growing safety compliance and enhanced security needs.

Despite real estate representing the world’s largest asset class – worth US$326 trillion – the built environment has been historically slow to adopt new technologies. Switched on Space Founder, Zac Goodman, has worked in the property industry for over ten years, developing a deep market insight working directly with tenants and landlords. His experience confirms that technology is only just beginning to make a dent in property. He also believes that the next decade will be marked by a seismic shift in the way in which buildings – and by extension, cities – operate. The built environment has reached its e-commerce moment.

Seamless integration

This drastic change in real estate will involve more flexibility combined with more layers of tech to elevate city life. Switched on Space is here to facilitate and accelerate the adoption of tech layers for safer, better buildings. We appreciate current security and PropTech markets are fragmented and convoluted. We scan the marketplace, curate the best products and provide technical and logistical support. This allows seamless end-to-end integration: always stress-free and always secure.

Individual needs

It is important to consider that “smart” is a subject term. It can mean a different thing from one company to the next, or from one city to the next. For one building it may involve industry-leading AI facial authentication software and frictionless access control; for the neighbouring building it might mean real-time signage and smart lockers. The implementation of smart solutions will never be homogenous, but rather, it should complement and enhance the unique expression of place.

For this reason, our host of smart solutions services are suitable for a wide cross-section of industry verticals. These include universities, financial services, healthcare, government, stadiums and general security. We have a key operating principle to never limit our customer or end user, whilst simultaneously, striving to deliver the best product fit to meet individual security and safety needs.

For Rough Trade (UK) Head of Retail, Kyle Hougham, the appropriate smart solution involved the implementation of the world’s most accurate people counting platform. Hougham commends: “Density has given Rough Trade the confidence to reopen our stores safely during COVID and for each management team, the data they need to plan resources. The best-in-class API has integrated seamlessly with our systems and this is a big advantage for us”.

The art of smart

Whatever the smart solution, Switched on Space believes enhanced security and quality of life are invariable. A smart space should always be a secure space. Moreover, a smart space should always be a more liveable, sustainable and prosperous place. If these conditions aren’t met, we must question the purpose of the pursuit. The smart cities of tomorrow will be rendered through a complex web of systems: optimising spatial, physical, commercial, social and digital fibres. Once we’ve mastered the art of smart buildings, smart cities will naturally light up and link up.

For more information, visit: switchedon.space

This article was originally published in the February 2022 edition of International Security Journal. Pick up your FREE digital edition here.

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