One new Silicon Valley company that catches our eye today is iControl, the latest to demo at DEMO. As its name suggests, it literally gives the user control over the whole home — including everything from video-recording to the thermostat — from a Web-based system. Nice analogy by Business Week about Big Brother.
We were alerted to the Palo Alto start-up by the prolific blogging from Jeff yesterday from DEMO. Jeff is a player (a venture capitalist with skin in the game) but doesn’t seem to pull his punches when he sees something wrong. That’s unusual, VCs don’t do much critical venting in public. In this case, he says iControl “is impressive,” but shares Stewart Alsop’s view that its going to be tough for this company because other companies have tried and failed before.
We checked in with iControl to ask about funding. Apparently, it’s all angel and founder money so far — but they’re currently closing a $1 million seed round, and anticipating raising a bigger round in Q2. Guess it makes sense, since they’re only launching for real in summer.
VB's research team is studying web-personalization... Chime in here, and we’ll share the results.