Interview with Rochus Niemierko, Business Development Manager at BlueID — Secure Mobile Keys and Cloud-based Access Control Technology
How do you solve the issues with access control at your coworking space? Are you planning to automate it? The idea is great as coworking hubs that rely on advanced technologies have better chances to attract new audiences and grow revenue.
I hope that this interview with Rochus Niemierko, business development manager at BlueID will reveal some new opportunities for coworking space digitalization, increasing its safety and accessibility.
We live in the world of IoT where innovative technologies like BlueID help to establish fast and secure connection between smart devices and objects. Their mission is to transform your members' smartphones into highly secure, convenient and flexible mobile keys. I am sure this innovation contributing to usability and convenience at your space will be appreciated by the community.
I guess you can't wait to know more about the company, their access control solution, and your benefits in case of its implementation.
Helga: Please tell us a bit about the company. How long are you on the market?
Rochus: BlueID was founded in 2006. From the very beginning, we have had one mission: turning smartphones into secure digital keys. We are experts in access control for the facility and mobility industries, where we serve coworking spaces and smart buildings, and car-sharing and trunk delivery providers, respectively. Our customers integrate BlueID to compete with a more attractive service for their users by transforming smartphones into highly secure, convenient and flexible mobile keys.
Helga: What main obstacles did you face on your way to success?
Rochus: One of our main obstacles was certainly market maturity. We had the vision of turning smartphones into secure mobile keys at a time when the only devices available were the Windows Mobile and Blackberry.
iPhones were launched only one year after we founded BlueID (called baimos technologies back then), and then it took smartphones another 4-5 years to become "mainstream devices".
Because of that, we had to continuously educate our customers about mobile keys. In the beginning, it was about showing that it is possible; then, it was about security. Now, it is about the ease of integration and user benefits.
Another challenge is ensuring smartphone compatibility. Each operating system, brand, and model have different specs and react differently to any software, including BlueID of course.
To overcome that, we have a team that constantly tests BlueID with all smartphone models to guarantee a frictionless and consistent experience for every user, regardless of their device.
Helga: Please present to us your product in a few sentences.
Rochus: For coworking spaces and smart buildings in general, we offer the BlueID ACCESS®, a complete cloud-based access permissions solution that turns smartphones into secure mobile keys. It comprises three main components:
- the BlueID Cloud, which includes the customer backend and the BlueID Trust Center.
It is set up on a highly secure and robust Public Key Infrastructure (PKI), where unique cryptographic identities are handled. It offers comprehensive user, lock and role management functions the user’s smart device — either NFC card or fob or a smartphone.
- the hardware: any BlueID-enabled lock, cylinder, wall reader, parking gate, locker, …
- the user’s smart device: either NFC card or fob, or a smartphone
We provide three apps for different personas and requirements within a building:
- the Keys App for the end-users to open doors and barriers (or a BlueID SDK for integrating BlueID functionalities into any third-party app);
- the BlueID Token Writer App for the front desk personnel to write access permissions on NFC cards and fobs;
- and the Lock Administration App for the facility manager to install and service locks.
Helga: What features of your access control system can be considered unique/innovative/revolutionary?
- Our patented security through PKI (Public key infrastructure);
- scalability through the cloud;
- ease of integration into any business logic, apps or locks through open APIs and SDKs;
- and use case flexibility through hardware-independence.
Helga: Why using your product is beneficial for coworking spaces?
Rochus: Because of the convenience BlueID brings, not only to the users but also to the coworking space providers. Recurring access permissions for specific time frames, for example, come very handy for coworking spaces that have a flexible and fixed desk offering.
In addition, to the best of our knowledge, we are the only provider with a dedicated locker/furniture lock in the hardware portfolio.
Helga: What issues can it solve for them?
Rochus: For the users, BlueID solves the issue of having to handle physical keys and not being able to stay in late. It also guarantees the convenience of accessing the building, rooms, and lockers with a device they always carry with them, while getting room information comfortably on their screens.
For the coworking space providers, BlueID solves the problem of high key management costs by making physical keys obsolete. It erases the need for front desk personnel and extinguishes the dangers of key loss and expensive lock replacement.
Helga: Is it easy to integrate your ACS with a coworking system?
Rochus: Yes, ease of integration is one of our competitive advantages. Through open REST-APIs and SDKs, we guarantee a convenient integration into coworking management systems, regardless of the business logic.
Helga: What hardware does a coworking space need to implement your system?
Rochus: We have already integrated into a wide range of hardware products of various manufacturers and we provide a variety of functionality and optics options for coworking spaces. Our extensive BlueID-enabled hardware catalog includes locks, cylinders and wall readers from ISEO, Uhlmann und Zacher, AUTEC, Südmetall and phg.
Helga: You constantly improve your product. What is the biggest thing implemented recently?
Rochus: We have recently launched BlueID onTouch®, a functionality for high-traffic foot environments with speeds of up to one user every two seconds. onTouch enables users to open doors and to pass through turnstile gates by simply touching an Android or iOS smartphone to a door or gate reader. The lock is activated by either NFC or Bluetooth wireless technology and can open in about one second. It basically allows the user to use the smartphone like a card by simply unlocking the smartphone and without opening an app.
Helga: Where do you see your company in three years?
Rochus: We see BlueID as the number one coworking space access control provider.
That's it for now. I hope this interview was interesting and useful. It's always great to have more information about a vendor when you are looking to improve access control at your coworking center.
Do you have any more questions to Rochus that were not covered in the interview? I encourage you to ask them in the comments. Please also feel free to share the interview with your friends on socials.
Would you like to know how you can implement access control system with andcards coworking software? Request a Demo call with our friendly customer-happiness manager!