If Marty McFly traveled back-to-the-future to our age and visited a smart home, he'd think there was kind of magic going on: an AC that turns itself on before it gets too hot, people telling the fridge to order more milk, drones that fly around and follow burglars...
Still, it doesn’t take a time-traveler to be amazed at the pace of change. Smart homes have evolved at such a breathtaking speed over the past decade and are now an affordable option for everyone.
But are they really such a big deal? Absolutely. This article will show the most important benefits of a smart home.
A smart home is a suite of devices and appliances – anything from smart thermostats and smart fridges to smart ovens and smart lights – that all connect into a common network within your home.
Each can be operated independently and remotely, often just through voice commands, and each can affect the other through the principle of IFTTT (if this, then that).
At the center of it all is your smart home hub. From here, everything can be controlled, whether it’s through the flick of a finger or a simple voice command.
And with this centralized control, life at home is transformed – with devices that bring peace of mind and security, comfort and convenience, and actually save you money.
Ever have that nagging feeling that you left the hob or the oven on? With smart home technology, you can check on the status of your devices from afar, just by looking at your smartphone.
For parents, in particular, smart devices are a godsend. Set smart lights to turn off as your child falls asleep or turn on in the hallway when they get out of bed. There are already smart baby monitors on the market, with HD night vision and a breathing monitor, sleep tracking, and movement detection standard features.
Smart homes also offer additional safety and well-being benefits. For a start, voice command technology enables a whole range of vital functionalities that would have previously been difficult for those with reduced mobility – from simple things like turning on the lights, to crucial things like contacting emergency services.
A home fitted with smart devices can be especially useful to people with Alzheimer’s and/or dementia, with sensors that can be set to notify them or a family member if a door has been left open or if the hob has been left on, for example.
In addition, smart devices that monitor health – such as smart sensor clothing and smart patches – can provide data on cardiac and respiratory health for optimal healthcare. Similarly, remotely monitored smart cameras and smart motion detectors provide an extra layer of protection and peace of mind for family members from afar, without compromising the independence of their loved ones.
Life in a smart home can become incredibly streamlined. A network of smart devices will study your preferences – from the contents of your fridge and the temperature of your air conditioning system to the kind of mood music that gets you out of bed with a smile on your face.
Whether it’s via your smartphone, a touchscreen interface, or simple voice commands, interacting with smart devices is incredibly simple. And with automated devices that learn your preferences, you can sit back and let your smart home do the work to create the perfect ambiance, whether it’s a Monday morning workout routine, a chilled-out weekend brunch, or a big game night. Greater comfort, convenience, and efficiency take the little stresses out of daily life and gives you the chance to fully enjoy the moment.
Now all you need is a robot that can stack the dishwasher, do your laundry, and pour you a glass of wine after a hard day at work.
Oh… wait… that exists!?
While smart homes certainly bring an element of luxury to life at home, it’s their ability to provide an extra level of security that could well be their most meaningful benefit in the long run.
From simple devices like smart doorbells that offer HD video surveillance and two-way audio to next-generation surveillance drones that can alert you to and record suspicious activity, the concept of home security is being completely reinvented.
A smart home enables you to check every security feature of your home in an instant. Using your smartphone, you can lock your doors, set your motion detectors, and check the playback of your surveillance cameras.
IFTTT technology can also enable your security devices to work in tandem. A motion detector triggers a security light, which triggers a static surveillance camera or security drone, which then sends a notification to your smartphone.
Smart homes can help to lighten the load on the planet, as well as on your bank balance. Research by the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy found that smart devices can save up to 20% on energy costs.
From smart lights and smart heating that turn off when they’re not needed to intelligent appliances that run to optimal efficiency, smart devices enable you to control your energy usage and costs.
They can do this not just by the way they operate, but also through the feedback they offer. You can now collect data from your smart appliances and devices through the form of a smart meter, giving you a precise breakdown of the energy used in your home. From the data collected, you can then make the necessary adjustments to lower your energy usage and save money.
With smart home technology improving all the time, the foundations are being laid to completely reshape our domestic lives.
And while the world’s biggest smart home companies are competing to create ever more innovative groundbreaking products, they are also collaborating to bring about a unified, open-source smart home platform that will make it easier than ever to create a future-proof, fully integrated smart home of the future.
Want to make your home a smart one but not sure how? Contact TechBuddy now and we’ll be happy to help.