How I Use My System: Matt Mahar

Thursday, December 31, 2015

As Vivint’s VP of consumer experience, Matthew Mahar said he is “obsessed with making sure that any consumer of smart home products gets the best experience that they can, in terms of usability, readability, enjoyment using the system, and … solving real problems.” He’s involved with both software and hardware design. Prior to starting at Vivint a year-and-a-half ago, Mahar worked with video game company EA Sports and at Nike. Security Systems News talked with him about his home system…

And what kind of system do you have?

I have the Vivint Sky Control system. I have the smart complete package  that we offer with a couple extras thrown in. I have a few extra door/window sensors and a few extra cameras. It’s a comprehensive system. … It’s got security and monitoring, it’s got a smart thermostat, it also has the doorbell camera, [and] the garage door controller.

Why this particular setup?

It kind of covers all the bases of how I always thought about the smart home. … Having a mobile app that’s easy to use is [great]. … My wife loves it; she uses it all the time. For her to say ‘hey, this is really simple and easy to use’ validates that I’m doing a good job and that it’s actually good for a lot of consumers.

What is one aspect of your security system that you wouldn’t want to live without?

If I had to choose one, I think it's the Vivint doorbell camera. … When things get delivered, when I get notified that someone’s been there and dropped something off—I love it.

Where do you see security going next? What are some big trends?

I see security evolving into something that … every house has. I think it’s part of everyday living. I think the way we look at it now is that it’s … only for, maybe, a certain category of consumers, but I actually think that [eventually] you’ll see it in every single home. One of the reasons why I think that’ll happen is because of the mobile phone. I think it’s going to be much easier for a homeowner to be aware of what has happened—or what is happening—because you now have a mobile phone.