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IoT: Mobile App for Smart Buildings and Yachts Management

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Industry: Internet of Things


  • A native IoT mobile app for automated management of connected devices in a building or on a
  • An intuitive, highly customizable user interface allowing to control lighting, climate, video
    surveillance, energy consumption and more

Technologies Used: Java, Android

Methodology: Agile


A European company offering complex, customizable systems and digital networks in the area of Internet of Things.


The customer needed a native Android app that would extend their core offering – that is, an integrated, highly customizable system for managing various connected devices in a smart building or on a smart yacht. HQSoftware’s IoT experts pulled together to take up this challenge, which also included working with the customer’s proprietary protocol in remoteness from the real devices, bringing a degree of uncertainty to the development process.


End-User Functionality

The project team built an intuitive user interface that allowed managing:

  • Surveillance cameras, with a possibility to change camera angles and zoom in/out
  • Heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC)
  • Energy consumption
  • Media systems, including set-top boxes and satellite tuners
  • Sensors and motion detectors
  • Video intercoms
  • Smart curtains, doors, locks and more
  • Lighting brightness and color for separate lamps or in the entire building
  • Preset or fully customized scenes for lighting, climate and smart curtains

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As the completion of some commands – for example, opening of blinds or gradual brightness change – is stretched over time, the app visualizes the progress in the real time.

Technical Background

HQSoftware ensured smooth communication between the user interface and the backend via the proprietary text protocol, supporting plain text and MessagePack, and sockets over a LAN or the Internet. The protocol allows configuring the visualization of an infrastructure – that is, picturing the location of all connected devices – at the server level, when deploying the devices in a setting. That said, the customer can save on customizing this part of UI for each client.

Over the IP protocol, the server communicates with gateways, which, in turn, communicate with devices, be it light bulbs, curtains or an air conditioner, over corresponding protocols like KNX, ZigBee and others. In addition to that, it directly communicates with IR gateways for remote control of IR-based devices and with video surveillance cameras.


In the course of the project, HQSoftware stuck to regular communication with the customer to make sure that using the unfamiliar proprietary protocol along with testing the app on simulated devices by no means would impede the time-to-market.

Content with the project results, the customer commissioned HQSoftware to create a customized mobile app for one of their premium clients. The team also went on to improve this product and contribute to the server-side development with more smart devices to be integrated into the system.

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