What Is a Smart Home & 4 Reasons To Have One
We’ve all heard of the Internet of Things, and how objects and products are interconnected to be easily identifiable through digital networks. This interlinking web of products is becoming not only bigger, but also better – or smarter – with every day. Statistics forecast that the smart home market size will reach 53.5 billion dollars worldwide by 2022.
So, what is a smart home? Seems like a simple question, but there are in fact several aspects that make a home smart, and these range from simply having a connected speaker to complete home automation. In a nutshell, a smart home is defined as residence that’s equipped with a series of devices that automate tasks generally performed by people.
How many devices or what level of automation is required for a house to be deemed as smart is left for debate. Some home automation systems can be built directly into the structure of the house itself, while other devices can be added on later. People usually operate them through voice commands, mobile apps, or AI.
What Makes a Home Smart?
Turning your house into a smart home can involve different degrees, depending on how much automation you want or need. As mentioned above, for some it can be as simple as investing in a connected speaker or security systems. However, if you’re looking at a certain degree of home automation and convenience, there are usually 5 components to a smart home:
- Smart lighting – you can buy smart bulbs and sensors, which not only communicate to your phone, but also save energy and increase efficiency.
- Smart speakers or multi-room speakers – connected to AI, these can really make your life easier, providing you with answers to questions, news, weather reports, or a good movie to watch. Some also allow you to make announcements that can be heard throughout the house.
- Smart thermostats – these can also help with energy saving and increased efficiency for your home. You can also look into smart heating and cooling systems.
- Smart smoke and carbon monoxide detectors – these go beyond the simple function of sounding the alarm when they detect smoke, they alert your smartphone. So you’ll not only know when there’s a fire nearby, you’ll know when there’s a fire no matter where you are.
4 Reasons to Invest in a Smart Home
Safe, security, and convenience are the main reasons why people want a smart home. All of it can be right at your fingertips with the right home automation. This will let you build out the exact environment you want or need that keeps you and your family safe, secure and, at the very least, entertained.
1. You Can Save Money
A wide range of home automation devices, such as the smart bulbs, smart thermostats, and so on increase the efficiency of your home. Not only can you more easily control your lights and your heat, but some of these devices can actually automate the heating and cooking of the house. This translates into lower electric bills.
Connected lights and appliances can also help you save money but using less energy. Some have the ability to power down when they’re not in use. There are many such devices and appliances available, so you should consider a thorough research when creating your smart home checklist.
2. You’ll Increase Convenience
Most of the technological advances today have been created on a path to convenience. People want things faster, better, easier. Having the ability to turn the light on or off without getting out of bed is high on the list of reasons why people consider home automation. You can also control smart lights based on a schedule, sensor detection, and more.
Another very popular example of convenience is automated appliances, which take over tedious tasks. The Roomba is the best example, a robot vacuum cleaner that you can simply schedule to clean whenever you want, even when you’re not home. There are other similar appliances, such as smart laundry washers that start a cycle at a given time, or even refrigerators that order milk online.
3. You’ll Increase Safety & Security
We all want to feel safe inside our own homes, but even more we want to know our house is safe when we are away. Although alarm systems were designed to provide this type of security, smart devices can add to that. Using home automation devices, you’ll be able to keep a closer eye on your home at any time, no matter where you are.
Doorbells can now be connected to cameras, which can be connected to the lights, and all can be connected to your smartphone. All of these can scare off potential burglars and keep your house safer. Many devices are able to detect motion not just in your house, but around the property as well, depending on the installation point.
4. You’ll Make Your Home More Fun
While keeping your home safe and saving money already sounds like a pretty good deal, a lot of times people invest in a smart home because it makes the house more entertaining. You can have music blasting on your smart speakers while cooking, voice activate the news or sports scores, and many, many more. When you combine m=smart devices with AI-based digital assistants, your home turns into an oasis.
Home automation reaches its peak when there’s a central hub that communicates with all the devices and upgrades, and then again communicates with your smartphone or tablet. The central hub is not really necessary to create a smart home, but it does unify your system. Because different devices are made by different brands and companies, they are sometimes programmed differently and speak different languages. The central hub operates as a translator to ensure cooperation and consistency between all.