Your Guide to Smart Homes

By Nick Matteo | July 22, 2016

The future is NOW.

Remember when it was futuristic to see voice-activated automation, or super luxe that someone could–at the touch of a button–close the shades, dim the lights, and turn on the music? That future is here. It’s bright, and–like today’s smartphones–completely individual and accessible.

There are so many options for smart tech for your home, so here’s a little guide to how to make your home a smart home.

Step 1: Get a handle on what a smart home is, and what it can do for you.

Smart-TechnologiesRemember when you had a physical calendar, and you had to actually write everything down and consult it frequently?
(Somewhere there’s a Generation Z kid shaking his head…wondering what we’re talking about) Smartphones have made physical calendars nearly obsolete. Same with watching the news to see the weather. Same with pulling out a big TI calculator. All that information and all those tools are now on apps on your phone.

With smart tech homes, it’s the same. Instead of manually adjusting the temperature, flipping a light switch, or putting a key in the lock, a central smart home ‘hub’ or ‘centerpiece’ does it all for you. And that hub is connected to your smartphone and/or voice commands.

Step 2: Know your options.

The Amazon Echo and the Samsung SmartThings centerpieces are the two best smart technologies you can get to centralize and control your smart home. Depending on your source (Cnet or tom’s guide), you’ll also get a good idea of where to get the best automated plugs, smart thermostats, smart lighting, smart security, and more!

Smart appliances are what will make your home much more tangibly efficient; they change your everyday life drastically.

Cnet built a smart home that you can actually tour in a 360° video. At first, you might think that a smart home doesn’t look that different…you can unlock your door and turn on the lights without lifting a finger. But then you go into the kitchen, and there’s a guy cooking salmon in a smart frying pan (that measures the temperature of the food in the pan and gives you detailed instructions on your phone), on a smart stove. The smart refrigerator takes a photo every time the fridge door is closed, so even if your teenagers drink all the milk while you’re out, you’ll know to get more just by checking your smartphone!

Step 3: Mix and Match (Carefully!)

Certain smart technologies only sync up with certain smart hubs. In the Internet of Things, there are still a lot of compatibility issues that must be navigated with care. It’s a process that must be approached with care and consideration.

For help transforming your home into a smart home, or if you’re building a new smart home, contact How Building Services. We stay on the cutting-edge of smart technology, so you can too!