Rad labs is a platform for apartment hacks to give renters control of their homes
– Concept Development, Research & Strategy, Business Modeling –
RadLabs is inspired by the smart thermostat system, Nest. The brief we received was to either build upon Nest's platform or disrupt it, we chose the latter. We mapped out Nest's ability to create a connected home and its ability to make one's home more comfortable by automatically adjusting through the users behavior, while making your home more energy efficient.
NEST ONLY WORKS IF YOU EITHER OWN OR ARE IN CONTROL OF A CENTRAL HEATING AND COOLING SYSTEM IN YOUR HOME. THIS ISN'T A REALITY FOR MOST OF US LIVING IN NYC OR OTHER CITIES; MOST OF US ARE RENTERS
In the winter, renters in the Northeast living in older buildings have to deal with radiators that are often blazing hot or not on at all. In the summer, renters fight the heat with window ACs , fans, and open windows at night. Scrappy solutions are often needed when the harsh winters and scorching summers come around. RadLabs' first product, Heat Flow, circulates stagnate air in the room towards a heated radiator, making the room heat faster and the room feel more comfortable. Searching sites like Instructables, one can find a handful of heating DIY solutions. Looking at the landscape of available hacks, we developed Heat Flow to be efficient, modular, safer for the environment and smartly designed.
THE ISSUE IS RENTERS LACK CONTROL OF their HEATING AND COOLING SITUATIONS AND Resort to HACKS TO TAKE BACK CONTROL OF their HOME’S TEMPERATURE. RADLABS WANTS TO TAKE THESE EXISTING HACKS AND MAKE THEM MORE EFFICIENT, MODULAR, SAFER FOR THE ENVIRONMENT AND smartly DESIGNED
The kits themselves are intended to be sold on the RadLabs platform where video tutorials detailing other hacks and content are also available. By mapping out financial projections for the next five years, we saw the need to round out the offering of this speculative platform. In the second year of the business model, the production of collaboration kits, designed by outside designers but manufactured and sold by RadLabs, are added to the model. Both the kits and videos build the RadLabs community and drive users to the site.
RadLabs is structured as a socially and environmentally aware business. Using the Lean business model, we identified a market (renters) and a pain point (the lack of control of their home's temperature) to create a valuable business proposition.