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Get your honey weighed from a distance

The internet of things is all over Hungary these days; even beekeeping and building maintenance are now part of the game.

Even professional beekeeping can benefit from online apps, courtesy of Smarthives.

TecoWorks Kft. is among those Hungarian Internet of Things (IoT) developers that dares to think big and has global ambitions in mind. As managing director László Bencsik says, it regards Hungary only as a “pilot market”, one that serves as the perfect terrain in which to bring its products and related support services up to the right level. Step two can’t be anything less than targeting foreign markets.

“Our most promising solution is made up of a small-budget hardware unit and cloud-based software; with the help of these, electricians and other building engineering professionals get a device to control customized systems without needing any in-depth software developer knowledge,” Bencsik explains.

The data collection function allows for conducting follow-up analyses and optimizing operations and energy consumption. The alert mode provides information on any default before the user would even notice. “This way the service level of engineering systems can be elevated. Heating systems for canteen kitchens or big apartment buildings can be monitored and maintenance could start even before there is no more hot water.”

Track down your stolen hive

A completely different area is targeted by Smarthives. A special online app is connected to sensors placed in hives that provide valuable data for beekeepers. Thanks to the anti-theft function, alerts are sent out anytime there is an indication that the hives are moved. “This is one of our hottest items since protecting bees poses a huge problem nowadays. A built-in GPS tracker enables owners to follow their stolen property,” György Fülöp, mastermind behind the concept tells the Budapest Business Journal. “Our number two hit is the online hive scale that shows the beekeeper remotely when it is time to collect honey.”

In order to better appeal to customers’ needs, Smarthives tours fairs and exhibitions extensively and has unleashed a massive marketing campaign. Surveys have been given out and assessed on a large scale. As a result, there are a number of additional functions that are now available, such as interior temperature and humidity measurement, or bee sound analysis.

Everyone in the business knows that offering tailor-made services is the real deal when it comes to IoT solutions. So it is no wonder that TecoWorks’ business strategy is built on exactly that, focusing on selling cloud-based technology as a service. As Bencsik says, it builds a background service for operators that they can incorporate into their own portfolio, and thus step up the level and quality of their stand-by availability. Smarthives, in turn, is counting on gradual progress based on the little-by-little principle. “A symbolic amount of HUF 150 is charged for the software per bee family. We hope though that our service will become wide-spread soon,” Fülöp notes. The bigger chunk of income now comes from selling the hardware. “This is not for hobby beekeepers, only those that do beekeeping for a living can afford it.”