Why it’s Time for Your Home to Get Smart
When the phrase “smart home” began appearing in our lives, the most impressive functionality possible in your ‘smart’ home was an app-controlled light switch. Smart home technology has come a long way in recent years and if you haven’t already, it’s time to take notice.
A smart home doesn’t have to be an all-out renovation of your home leaving you with smart forks, smart toasters, and smart water filters (yeah, those are all real things). A smart home can be as advanced and interconnected as you desire. Read on in this guide to learn how smart home features can save you time and money in your home, and how to get started.
What is a Smart Home?
“Smart home” is a blanket term that refers to any home WiFi network that has one or more smart device connected to it. A single Google Home Mini can be a smart home in and of itself. Two smart lightbulbs controlled by a phone or tablet on your wifi would also be a smart home. Smart home devices are all trying to make our lives more convenient in one way or another. They provide this convenience primarily through intelligence and automation.
The most convenient feature of a voice-activated device like an Amazon Echo or Google Home is the one that saves you time and effort. Simply say “Ok Google, remind me to buy garlic at the store” or “Alexa, when will the Super Bowl be played?” With smart homes, the endless information of the internet is suddenly at your beck and call. Your smart assistant knows everything there is to know and is there for you at all times. Smart assistants are trustworthy, convenient, and never take a sick day.
A smart home assistant can be used to do more than answer questions, however. Automation is the name of the game when it comes to smart devices. Smart bulbs can be automatically dimmed, color changed, or turned off with a quick voice command. Smart thermostats can be adjusted from work to save energy and prepare your home for your comfort when you get home. A smart vacuum can pick up the cookie crumbs your children kicked under the sofa before the ants ever find it. Automation takes away dull, difficult, tedious tasks at every turn in a well-engineered smart home. Are you starting to wonder why you haven’t jumped on the bandwagon yet? This leads us to the ultimate smart home question:
Where do I Get Started with a Smart Home?
Investing in a smart home system is much easier than most people think. The hardest part is likely deciding which smart home system to go with. There are 4 main competitors in the smart home system arena; Google, Amazon, Apple, and Nest.
The first step to deciding which smart home hub is right for you is to figure out whether or not you’d like a voice-controlled assistant in your home. If you’re an avid Android user who’s grown accustomed to saying “Ok Google” for every minor question, it won’t be a far jump to the full range of Google Home products. If you were gifted an Amazon Alexa for Christmas, that is a great first step toward the full range of smart products.
If you’re not a fan of a voice-controlled assistant in your home, Nest products are a great place to start. Even if you’ve been slow to adopt new technologies, Nest’s products can be adapted to your home and level of connectedness. With the click of a button on your smartphone, you can enable your Nest home security system and view security cameras on your property.
The beauty of building a smart home is that you can build products up slowly over time. A smart assistant is a great place to start, then build that network until it has connected your entire home. Research every functionality offered by smart home accessories to figure out which are most important for you.
Love dancing to surround-sound music while you clean the house? Google Home Minis in each room of the house can play simultaneously throughout the whole home. Hate getting up to turn the lights off after you’ve already settled in for the Netflix binge? Smart bulbs have you covered. Whatever home convenience issue you have, there’s a smart product designed just for you. Smart fridges can tell you whether or not you’ve got milk when you’re at the store. Smart doorbells can show you a solicitor from the comfort of your couch. Smart blinds can even be programmed to open at a certain time to wake you.
How do I Set up a Smart Home System?
This might all sound good, but what about the actual setup? So you’re not a techie, no worries. To get started, all you have to do is plug in your new smart TV or smart assistant and connect it to your WiFi. Like we said before, the hardest part is just deciding which device you're starting with. Everything from that point on is reading directions.
If you’re looking for a fully-integrated and seamless smart home system with all the bells and whistles, you can go the DIY route and research all the gadgets that are compatible with your chosen system. If your end goal is a fully-functional network with each device in one easily accessed app on your phone, chances are the Google Home system is right for you. If nothing in this guide is news to you, what are you waiting for? Go enjoy the endless ways smart home technology can be making your life easier!
But what about those of us that aren't quite as technologically savvy? If every sentence in this post has you feeling like you’re reading a foreign language, give us a call! Our team has experience fitting homes with the full range of products on the market today. Why not build your dream home with everything you need to live your dream life?