The smart home movement has reinvented the phrase “there’s no place like home” with everything from smart security to smart cleaning infiltrating our everyday lives. And the industry depicts no signs of slowing down. According to Juniper Research, voice assistants used in smart homes are predicted to grow 1,000 per cent, reaching 275 million by 2023. There’s really a smart device for just about everything, but the real question is how to manage all of those devices in one place? Here’s the run-down on running your smart home devices from your phone or tablet to save time, stay productive and keep pace with the smart home revolution.
Start with the essentials
It’s easy to slide down the rabbit hole of smart home obsession. New York Magazine reported on curious consumers starting with a simple smart home upgrade like lightbulbs that spiraled into 70 smart-home devices and counting. But whether you aspire to own dozens and dozens of smart home devices, or just want to enhance what you have, the best place to start is with the essentials. A home security camera system with remote monitoring capabilities is a must. Homeowners can check in on their property from work, while running errands or when travelling around the world. A not-so-obvious choice? A water leak detector. You can stop invisible water leaks before they get out of control with Flo. You could end up saving yourself thousands in potential water damage.
Leverage your smart assistant
You could launch multiple smart home apps to control everything from your lighting to your thermostat, or you could leverage an assistant to help keep it all organized for you. Sure, Alexa can turn on your music and tell you the weather, but there are other things it can do that homeowners often overlook. For example, use Alexa like an old-fashioned landline, or even call and leave messages to other Alexa devices in other people’s homes. It can also control everything from your lights to the garage door, or you can create an IFTTT to train Alexa to do what you want. The IFTTT creates a rule to do something like turn on a specific song when a timer goes off. Now if only there was an IFTTT to do your work for you.
Simplify with a plug
Smart home devices and gadgets are pretty fancy and can do things like changing the lighting in a room to make it look like the sunset. But what if you just want to make your house more efficient and aren’t interested in all of the bells in whistles? A simple TP-Link Smart Plug Mini can be used with your phone or with Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa. Once you’re set up, just plug in lights, an appliance, etc., and set it to turn on and off either manually or at a scheduled time. It comes in handy if you want to mix things up while you’re out of town and want your lights to come on sporadically.
Get smart about domestic bliss
Your smart home should also be a clean one, and smart robot vacuums are available and ready to control from your smartphone and app. For a splurge, the Roomba i7+ integrates with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant voice control and can do everything from learn your home’s layout, leverage multi-story mapping and can even empty its own dustbin. That sounds pretty smart and completely convenient.
Your smart home can be as complex and tricked out as you want, or be simplified to just the essentials. From home security to sweeping your floor, there’s a smart home device for everything on your list.