The Best Smart Home Primer of 2019

man holding smart phone

What you need to know about smart home automation.

Smart homes are using computer networks to connect devices and functions that make home life simpler, safer, and more efficient. Home automation is not necessarily new, but the technologies have become less expensive, more innovative, and easier to install and use.

There are many aspects to a smart home and several new products available on the market. This primer will discuss these aspects in products and provide you valuable insight into what makes the modern home “smart.”

How Does Smart Technology Work?

There are certainly more complicated answers, but the basic understanding is that smart devices connect to controls via your wireless network. These controls are often found on smartphones or tablets, making the operation of your smart home technologies simple.

A modern twist on smart home control has emerged with the development of smart assistants like Alexa and Google Assistant. These technologies have allowed for even further simplification of commands. For example, rather than finding the “lighting” section of a smart home iPad app, you can simply say, “Alexa, turn on the lights.” 

Smart technology presents a true sense of “the future is now.” The days of The Jetsons looking like a far-off impossibility are gone. Homes can be controlled entirely remotely or with voice commands.

How Can a Smart Home Help Me?

Smart homes can be entirely controlled from afar. Temperature, lighting, and other efficiency-related features can be manipulated when away from home. This alone adds security and cost savings value to smart home technology. 

There are myriad other ways smart homes benefit their owners. Here is a quick rundown of some common features found to be important to smart home homeowners. 

Control the Light and Temperature

Do you remember when a dimmer switch was something only found in the homes of your rich friends? Those days are long gone! Now smart dimmers can be put on almost any light, making full lighting control a possibility.

These switches make it possible to control the brightness and turn bulbs off and on. They can be easily set on a timer for efficiency and security purposes. The full control of home lighting represents one of the earliest and most convenient aspects of smart home technology.

There has been a lot of research conducted on the appropriate setting of thermostats. Unfortunately, many are too basic to set timers, control remotely, or automatically sense the need for adjustments. Smart thermostats are a fix to this issue. They can raise and lower temperatures according to the time or you can control it remotely while away from home.

Simplified Home Security

Security is paramount to homeowners. No one wants to think about a break-in or burglary. Smart homes are making security features easier to operate and install. Smart security systems can remotely control locks, allow remote video surveillance, and alert local emergency services when something is wrong.

Smart locking systems can prevent dreaded lockouts and eliminate the need to keep track of house keys. They can also help remedy the, “Oh no, did I close the garage door?” 

Smart homes are safer than traditional homes. The variety of security options available make keeping your family safe easy.

Useful Conveniences

Have you ever been at the store and wondered if there was any fruit in the refrigerator? There are smart refrigerators that can answer this question for you and communicate with you in real-time via Wi-Fi and cellular connections. 

Timers have long been in existence for lawn sprinkler systems. However, now you can adjust the schedule even when you are away from home. This is ideal if you are traveling and see that your city is forecasted to have rain. Smart weather stations can automate this entirely, basing watering schedules on projected and actual rainfall totals.

Motion sensors have traditionally been used for turning the lights on when someone enters a room. Smart technology allows almost anything to be connected to motion sensors. 

Even the simplest of conveniences, like automatically recording your weight after stepping onto the scale, are offered by smart homes. The sky is quickly becoming the limit for what a smart home can do.

Should I Be Concerned with Privacy Issues?

The rise in smart technology and Wi-Fi connections has led to a similar increase in dubious hacking ideas. Stories abound of people being watched through their Smart TV or listened to via their Google Assistant. 

These are valid concerns and should be weighed by each individual. Some homeowners are less concerned with their digital privacy than others. There is also value in performing due diligence when it comes to installing new smart devices. This is the case with any digital technology in this day and age.

Other Concerns About Smart Technology

Smart technology has become far more advanced than it was five years ago. Even still, there can be issues with compatibility between products. If your intent is to create a smart home, take the time to evaluate how each device can network together. The last thing you want is for your smart home to become complicated.

While costs have declined for many smart home products, the creation of an entirely smart home can still be expensive. Many smart homes feature devices that would be considered a luxury to most people. Consider starting with safety and efficiency devices and adding other products as your budget allows.

The thought of installing smart home devices may cause you anxiety. While most installations are simple by design, you can always solicit help. Feel free to reach out to us at BBD Lifestyle or stop by our Downtown St. Petersburg FL showroom.

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