The holidays are a time of joy and gifts. Whether you are asking someone to get you a smart home gift, or you are gifting a smart home device, you might encounter a family member that has no idea what smart home technology is. And for that, you can use this blog as a quick cheat sheet to answer all their burning questions.
What is smart home technology?
Smart home technology refers to devices, like lights and locks, that can be connected to your home network. Once your devices are on the network, they can be grouped together to function as a single device or as a more comprehensive control board. Devices that are meant to make the home smart have been around for a long time – think lights that turn on and off when you clap – but in recent years the technology behind it has advanced to a point where the devices can now be connected, or smart.
What does home automation do?
Smart home technology devices can be connected and automated using the Internet of Things. You can set up custom automation cycles based on preferences, or based on other devices or factors, such as turning lights on and off with the sunset and sunrise, or turning the lights on when you unlock your front door’s smart lock. It also allows for control of these devices remotely; you can adjust lights, locks, and thermostats from anywhere. Essentially, home automation is all about convenience, but also offers safety and cost savings.
Why Should I Use Smart Home Technology and Home Automation?
Convenience, safety, and cost savings are the top reasons for using home automation and smart technology. The convenience factor is great – control from anywhere, control with your voice, control based on actions – it’s a nice way to set up your home. And if all smart home technology offered was convenience, I’d still be sold. But, it offers even more than that. Smart devices can alert you to emergencies at your home, like water leaks, fires, and break-ins. It also gives peace of mind for those that worry, since you can check and update the status of your home locks and garage door from anywhere. Smart home devices can also offer cost and energy savings. Your thermostat can naturally adjust – either to the temperature or to the time of day. You can keep it cooler overnight and set the temperature to rise just before you get out of bed in the morning. Smart home devices can also track things like your water and energy usage, so you know where you need to cut back.
Is Smart Home Technology Secure?
This one is tricky. Anything on the Internet is vulnerable, and in order to explain how to really keep your smart home secure you would need to use a lot of tech buzzwords that will be lost on most of your family. If it is a device you are using, just say yes. If you are gifting a device, you probably want to spend some time telling them how to install…..nope, you just want to volunteer to set it up for them. It will save you your sanity.