Ok, so we might not yet be living in a world where robots to do all of our cleaning, but we’re definitely closer than we were. Technological advances have made a huge difference on our homes, especially when it comes to the convenience and control provided by smart home technologies. Just like your ‘smartphone’, a smart home is one with highly advanced features that connect to the internet. Linking your lighting, heating and cooling, security, and other systems to your wi-fi allows you to turn them on and off from anywhere, program specific settings based on the time of day or year, and choose the most energy efficient settings (which saves you money while it helps the environment). Check out some of the best, futuristic options we’ve ever seen!
Smart Features for a Smart Homeowner
The Bureau of Justice Statistics claims that burglary rates in the US are dropping, but that doesn’t necessarily mean your house won’t be targeted and it pays to be prepared. With new security camera options available like the Icontrol Piper NV and the Nest Cam, you can control your security system from your phone, check in while you’re away, and set it to send you alerts when it captures unexpected movement. Plus, the Nest Cam can be set up and connected to other Nest devices for hands-off comfort (see below).
While security cameras are great, most won’t remind you to lock the door on the way out. If you’re the forgetful type, why not install a lock you control from your phone next time you update your front door? If you’re more prone to lose your keys than to forget to lock the door, there are options for you too - the Kevo Smart Lock opens via your fingerprint, your phone, or even a regular key. You can also program permanent or temporary users for vacation-time house-sitters. No more worrying - these super smart locks take care of keeping your home and family safe for you!
While we’ve known the benefits of smoke detectors for years past, new smoke detectors are a thing of the future. Nest (the company of the Nest Cam, above) also makes a super cool, super smart combination smoke and carbon monoxide detector called Nest Protect. It syncs with the Nest Cam (above) and Nest Thermostat (below), all of which are controlled via an app on your phone, to provide easy-to-use, convenient protection (including spoken warnings and the option to turn the alarm off remotely). Plus, the detector can tell you where the smoke is coming from and whether it’s just smoke or a fast-burning fire, so you don’t panic when you don’t have to.
To round out the trio, the Nest Thermostat (also controlled by your phone and linked into the Nest Cam and Nest Protect) allows you to preprogram the heating/cooling comfort in your home based on the time of day, your location, and even your habits. It’ll ‘learn’ when you’re usually away and allow you to make changes on your way so you come home to a comfy house; if there’s a carbon monoxide leak, the Nest Protect can turn off the Thermostat to slow the leak. If you’re not a fan of the Nest products, consider looking into comparable alternatives, like the tado thermostat or the Aros window a.c. They’ll both give you total control while also saving you money!
Finally, have you ever imagined being able to change the setting of your home with just a push of a button? Well dream no more - with integrated smart home systems that control your lighting, motorized window treatments, and temperature, you can program setting the mood for waking up, going to bed, throwing a cocktail party, or even a romantic evening with a sweetheart. Control4 and smarthome both offer multiple options for your home. With the press of a button, you can lean back and relax; leave the rest to technology!