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SimpliSafe’s success awakens sleeping giant

Scott Kirsner, Boston Globe

Today, the company offers a range of equipment, including glass-break detectors, panic buttons, and water sensors for basements. All of them can send alerts to, or be controlled by, a smartphone. SimpliSafe had 100 employees at the start of 2015, and ended the year with almost 250. BestBuy and Walmart also began carrying its products in November.

Nick Heymann, an equities analyst who covers ADT for the Chicago investment firm William Blair & Co., says about 26 million homes in the United States have installed traditional alarm systems, but the number has plateaued in recent years.

SimpliSafe, by contrast, has built a business by selling to people who haven’t bought a traditional system. “They saw them as too expensive, too difficult, too cumbersome,” Chad Laurans says. And some customers wanted to install sensors that alerted only them about occurrences in their home, rather than summoning the police.

SimpliSafe’s success awakens sleeping giant

Censio, Led by Ex-Zipcar CEO, Brings Mobile Tech to Car Insurance

Gregory T. Huang,

In the business of connected cars, at least one clear market has emerged: insurance. Today a Boston startup is taking a big step in that market.

Censio, which has been growing quietly next to the Harvard Innovation Lab, said Wednesday it has formed a partnership with Progressive Insurance to develop a mobile app to monitor driving data. The app, called Snapshot, captures information about how people drive—things like mileage, time of day, and braking habits—and rates drivers on safety and usage. Progressive will start testing the app with customers this month, with the goal of rolling out a finished version in 2016.

See also:  Censio Announces Close of $10 Million Series A Financing From General Catalyst Partners, Bain Capital Ventures and Lakestar