Interview with Svetlin Todorov

Svetlin Todorov
Svetlin Todorov

In a captivating interview with Svetlin Todorov, CEO of Shelly USA, we dive deep into the world of smart home automation and its transformative impact on family life. Svetlin shares his unique perspective on how embracing a certain level of “laziness” can lead to a more relaxed and fulfilling family experience through the use of IoT technology. From simplifying daily routines to enhancing security and energy efficiency, Shelly’s innovative smart relays, plugs, and sensors offer practical solutions for modern families. With a focus on balancing convenience and privacy, Shelly is at the forefront of making smart home technology accessible and secure. Join us as we explore the evolution of IoT in catering to the needs of families and how Shelly is shaping this exciting landscape.

Maria: Can you tell us about the inspiration behind Shelly Group’s focus on smart relays, plugs, and sensors? How do these products contribute to making homes more family-friendly?

Svetlin Todorov: Honestly, the inspiration behind our products was being lazy. Allow me to explain. I understand that the term ‘lazy’ often carries a negative connotation. However, I firmly believe that in today’s constantly connected, fast-paced world, embracing a certain level of ‘laziness’ can be a positive thing, because we all deserve a break every once in a while. From my perspective, smart home automation and IoT technology can introduce convenience and comfort into your life, contributing to your overall wellness, preventing burnout, and providing the peace of mind that you and your family deserve.

For me a ‘lazy’ person possesses something highly valuable: extra time. Research indicates that taking it easy can enhance focus, improve overall health, and boost well-being. By automating everyday tasks using IoT devices, like Shelly’s smart relays, plugs, and sensors, we aim to alleviate mental clutter, reduce the stress of daily life, and save people money. This enables parents and people all over the world to find moments where they can embrace their lazy side, and as a result, be more present for the people and activities that truly matter to them.

Maria: With the increasing integration of technology into our homes, how do you envision smart home automation enhancing the parenting experience?

Svetlin Todorov: Smart home automation has a lot of potential to make parenting easier and more enjoyable. At every stage of the parenting journey, this technology can simplify daily routines, enhance security, reduce anxiety, ease the mental load, and create a more comfortable and efficient living environment. Plus, it is a wonderful opportunity for kids to learn tech skills early, seeing firsthand how it improves our lives – helping them integrate tech more easily into their own lives as they grow up.

Maria: Shelly devices offer flexibility and connectivity for home automation. How can parents utilize these smart technologies to create a safer and more efficient environment for their children?

Svetlin Todorov: Inflation may be easing, but the cost of electricity continues to increase. And with climate change causing more extremes in weather year-round, families are often at the mercy of the rising cost of energy. Smart home technology offers more than just novelty; when thoughtfully integrated into your home, it becomes a powerful tool for monitoring, managing, and reducing energy consumption. This not only benefits the environment but also eases the strain on your finances while enhancing your family’s comfort.

Smart home technology can also be used to safeguard your home and give parents the peace of mind they deserve. From using the technology to sense when something is wrong (like the basement flooding, or a door ajar) to detecting when the humidity levels are too high in your child’s room, there are many different applications for smart home technology to create a safe and secure environment for you and your family.

Maria: As a co-founder and CEO of Shelly USA, could you share some practical examples of how your smart products have positively impacted the lives of parents and families?

Svetlin Todorov: As a parent of two teenagers notorious for leaving lights on, I have personally installed Shelly’s smart relays and motion sensors to automate the lighting in our home. This means I no longer need to stomp through the house, switching off the lights any time my kids leave a room. It also has the added benefit of making sure we are not wasting energy, helping our family save money and reducing our impact on the environment.

I also know families who use our products to alleviate some of the concerns and mental burdens associated with parenting. For example, they use our sensors to ensure that the baby’s room maintains the perfect temperature and humidity, and our door and window sensors to monitor their home remotely and make sure their child got home from school as expected. Our customers also use our motion detectors to dim the lights for the perfect bedtime routine, or to create a nightlight that turns on the moment it is needed.

I have also come across a customer who used Shelly products to add an extra layer of magic to their family dance parties. They automated the lights, seamlessly integrating them with their voice assistant and speakers. Now, with a simple voice command, “Hey Google… Let’s have a dance party!” they can create memorable fun experiences right from their living room.

Maria: Shelly Group’s products are designed to facilitate IoT-based solutions. How do you see IoT evolving to cater to the needs of modern families, and what role does Shelly play in this evolution?

Svetlin Todorov: At Shelly, we put our customers at the center of everything we do. We are laser-focused on solving real-life problems for families and making smart home technology easy and affordable to use. We recognize that not every family is the same and that each family’s challenges and needs are unique. This is why we are committed to listening to our customers and designing products that allow families to be creative in how they integrate our products into their homes. As more and more families start to invite and integrate Shelly into their homes and daily routines, it is our promise and our responsibility to continue to innovate and design products that create more ease in their lives, not make it harder.

Maria: Balancing convenience and privacy is crucial in smart home technology. How does Shelly Group address the concerns of parents who might be hesitant about adopting these technologies due to privacy considerations?

Svetlin Todorov: It is important to be careful when choosing smart devices that connect to the internet. When buying smart devices, I always advise consumers to make sure the devices and the manufacturer are aligned with your safety and security preferences before you buy and install them in your home. Always read the rules about how your device’s data will be used carefully and only buy products from companies that you trust to keep your personal information private.

At Shelly, we take the responsibility of handling people’s personal data very seriously. Ensuring the security of our customers’ information is our top priority. We recognize the data our customers choose to share with us reveals a lot about their daily routines. As such, we are committed to storing data on dependable cloud servers located in North America or Europe. Additionally, we give customers the freedom to select their preferred and trustworthy cloud service, along with their desired security settings.

Our team takes pride in designing software and devices that empower our customers by providing flexible solutions that allow them to make choices that suit their comfort and preferences when it comes to privacy and security. We also offer products that can work without sending your data to the internet. They use Wi-Fi but do not need a cloud or hub – giving our customers more control over your data and how it is used and shared.

Maria: You’ve been involved in both European and American markets. How do you see cultural differences influencing the adoption and utilization of smart home solutions among families in these regions?

Svetlin Todorov: As a European living in America and CEO of a global smart home automation company, the most noticeable difference is that Europeans are more concerned about managing their energy use to mitigate costs. Americans are concerned about this too, do not get me wrong – but the utility prices in Western Europe, due to the war in Ukraine and inflation are crippling for many families. Smart home automation coupled with power

As a European living in America and CEO of a global smart home automation company, the most noticeable difference is that Europeans are more concerned about managing their energy use to mitigate costs. Americans are concerned about this too, do not get me wrong – but the utility prices in Western Europe, due to the war in Ukraine and inflation are crippling for many families. Smart home automation coupled with power monitoring devices are becoming a necessity for many Europeans.