Access all areas

What does it take to ensure the best people flow experience? The answer is a single system that seamlessly integrates access control with elevator control for users to get from A to B without compromising security. 

In 2012, KONE partnered with Swiss-based firm dorma+kaba, a leader in state-of-the-art access technologies, to create a single system for building users. Dubbed KONE Access, the system relies on Kaba's most advanced software application, Exos. 

“We developed an embedded Exos software module, specifically for KONE, that integrates all the functions needed for specific elevator controls,” explains dorma+kaba CEO Riet Cadonau. “So whenever a customer asks for KONE Access, he receives the full suite of Kaba access controls along with this elevator control system module.”

Less interfacing, more efficiency

While most building control systems require separately-developed software packages to interface with one another, KONE Access was developed as a single, integrated system.

The key element of Kaba-backed systems like KONE Access is convenience. “Security has to be effortless for the user, otherwise it will not be secure because it will be overridden,” he notes.

People-oriented buildings

Ari Virtanen, KONE's Senior Vice President for Access Control and Integrated Solutions agrees. 

“Fundamentally, buildings need to serve their users,” says Virtanen. “First, users experience an access control system, then a security gate system then an elevator system. That is not very good end user experience at all and that's something we want to change.”

Al Fattan Currency House in Dubai, is a case in point. The building was converted from residential to office use, but there was no option to rebuild the small elevator shafts or widen the lobby space to accommodate the peaks in traffic flows.

KONE Access, however, was able to increase people flow through strategic placement of security turnstiles, also developed by Kaba, which also automatically call elevators for the users as they enter. The system then groups travellers into the same elevator if they are going to the same floor.

The digital horizon

KONE Access also saves architects and construction companies the cost of dealing with separate providers during the building phase, Virtanen points out. 

The construction industry is still very partitioned, he says. Building systems controlling elevators, escalators, doors, lighting, heating and ventilation are still being developed in their individual silos. But the benefits of merging these systems, now far easier thanks to digitalization, will eventually push the trend towards integration. 

That’s because, by collaborating with right partners, new innovations and new value can be created quickly and brought to market much faster, compared to a single company going-it alone.