Advances in automation already have autonomous cars driving thousands of miles each week in the United States. Automation has worked its way into homes in the form of smart-devices, or devices that connect wirelessly to the internet for easy use. So how does home automation effect you on an everyday basis? Here’s a look.
What is a Smart Home?
A smart home is a house or apartment, any place called home, which is equipped or furnished with a collection of smart devices. Smart devices don’t only connect with the internet, they connect and communicate with each other. For instance, your smartphone may be your smart home hub. Apps for all smart home devices are easily accessible to you, which allows you to control your home from anywhere and at any time. Turn up the thermostat before you get home, start your coffee brewing before you get out of bed, or program your TV’s DVR to record a new show you’ve just heard about. Smart home devices make your life easier, save you time, and increase your productivity.
Smart Home Devices:
As mentioned above, most home appliances can be found with automation technologies. Smart coffee makers, toasters, and dishwashers can all take a little stress out of your busy schedule. But home appliances aren’t the only way automation has given rise to the smart home. Here are some popular gadgets that can make your home truly smart.
Smart Home Hub: A hub is the central controls of your smart home. They are voice activated and sync with all your other smart home devices. The Amazon Echo and Google Home are the most popular hubs on the market. Just activate either hub with key phrases like, “Okay Google. . .”, or, “Alexa. . .” then issue a command, such as, “play Lemonade by Beyonce,” or, “Play the latest episode of This American Life.” The hub will search for what you ask and turn it on. Furthermore, command the hub to turn on your TV, play episodes of your favorite show, or start a movie.
Smart Lock: Smart locks, such as Lockitron and August, connect with your deadbolt, but sync with your phone so you can manage your lock remotely. You can also grant access to anyone who has the app, as well. For instance, a dog walker doesn’t need a key anymore, just grant them access on the respective app. If your friends from out of town arrive while you’re at work, they can let themselves in. Revoke access from anyone’s smartphone at any time.
Smart Thermostat: Smart thermostats can pay for themselves quickly, as they learn your habits and adjust the temperature of your home accordingly. Nest, for instance, tracks your thermostat use and remembers it. If you get home at 5:30 three evenings in a row, Nest will remember what time you typically turn the heat up and have your house warm for you once you walk in the door. On the other hand, it knows when you are not home, and won’t waste energy and money heating an empty house.