How Smart Home technologies are changing our everyday lives?
Imagine a morning, your alarm rings and you wake up. You check on your kids in the other room with a tap on your smartphone. That one tap allows you to see that if your kids are still sound asleep or not. Realizing that you have still time, you decide to hit the gym. You wear your smartwatch and head out. Once your workout is over, you sync your information with your smartphone so that you are able to track your progress. Once you are about to leave for work, you receive an email on your watch, informing that the meeting that was scheduled for this morning has been delayed. You have a couple of minutes so you decide to check the daily headlines, you turn on the TV with your smartphone. You easily navigate to a local news channel and find the information you need. This scenario is a common reality now as more and more users started adopting smart home technologies.
Technologies that enable the smart home boom
Home automation or domestics technologies such as Bluetooth low energy, the 802.11AC wi-fi, automation protocols, Gigabit ISPs (Google fiber), and voice and motion recognition technology enable the remote monitoring and management of home appliances and lighting systems. Bluetooth enables a user to send a short burst of data in order to activate specific activities in your house. 802.11AC wi-fi that creates a beam in your house in and decreases the frequency of having a bad signal in certain areas. With the 802.11AC, a user gets the correct speed and bandwidth needed to enable the applications.
Automation protocols like Insteon and ZigBee are the foundation of the home automation since decades. These protocols enable devices to communicate with each other inside a house. Another technology that facilitated the smart home boom is the Gigabit ISP, Google fiber being the most well-known of it. These ISPs push a user’s information to the cloud without any bandwidth constrained. Voice and motion recognition technology helps you to control your environment just by doing certain gestures or by talking.
Making the “Dumb” Devices Smart
Smart home technologies have many use cases and one such area is “smartening” the existing devices. A home appliance such as a lamp that is not internet enabled can become smart once enabled with technologies like WeMo switch. If you aren’t sure if you left a lamp on in a room, all you need to do is plug into a WeMo switch. Then through your smartphone, you switch on or off the device. Another such technology is Twine, a wireless square with sensors and a web app that set rules for devices. For example, you can use Twine to get information about when your laundry is done or an email if your bathroom floods or to see if your washing machine has overflowed. Twine senses the humidity in the room and tells if anything atypical has happened or not.
As one can see, even dumb devices can become smart with the implementation of technology. Overall, smart home technologies can revolutionize the way you live. As new technology is developed and becomes less expensive, more people will be able to experience the benefits of having a smart home.
Some examples of smart home technologies are:
- Smart TVs- Internet-enabled television that access content through applications. Some smart TVs also has the feature of voice or gesture recognition.
- Smart lighting systems- Can be controlled remotely and customized, Hue from Philips can detect if there are occupants in a room or not and adjust lighting as needed.
- Smart thermostats- Comes with integrated Wi-Fi, enabling home temperature control remotely. It learns the homeowners’ behaviors and modifies the settings to provide maximum comfort and efficiency. Smart locks- Allows a user to grant or deny access to visitors remotely. It can also detect when residents are nearby and unlocks the doors.
- Smart security cameras- Residents can monitor their homes remotely and can identify the difference between residents, visitors, pets and outsiders, and notifies authorities.
- Pet care can become smart with connected feeders and lawns can be watered with the help of connected timers.
- Smart Kitchen appliances such as smart coffee makers that can brew a fresh cup as the alarm goes off
As you can see, there numerous implementation of smart home technology and it can revolutionize the way we live. As smart technology is evolving and becoming less expensive, more people will be able to experience the benefits of having a smart home in the near future.