Whether you’re an early or late adapter, it seems we’re all starting to arrive at the same party when it comes to home automation technology. With nearly 20% of ‘Smart Homes’ already in existence in 2018, and that number expected to hit 37.6% by 2022, it’s clear that this is definitely not “just a phase”.
Now, if we think of a “smart home” as the party and the people as everything that goes in to making it a smart home, you may not know very many people yet. And that’s ok. You just want to start by getting to know a couple of the guests and build from there. But first and foremost, do you even want to be at the party and which guests should you be getting to know first?
Why would I want a smart home?
When technology works, it’s purpose is to make your life easier. And when smart home technology works, it creates a self-sustaining home that can cater to your every need. Lights switching on at the clap of your hand, or an alarm clock waking you up and switching on the coffee machine at the same time.
These intelligent platforms can even help you to save money on bills. Save on energy by making sure you only use it where needed, such as air conditioning systems which switch off when they don’t detect anyone in the room for 20 mins. Or having a smart security system installed may reduce your home contents insurance.
Plus, you’ll never have to worry about whether you’ve left the stove/hair straighteners/door unlocked again! And if you have kids or pets, you’re worries could be put to rest with programs which monitor them whilst they’re at home waiting for you to get back.
Where do I start?
Ok, so we’ve established that having a fully automated, all-singing, all-dancing, smart home would definitely be useful. But, if you aren’t in a position to go for all the bells and whistles straight away, which ones should you go for first?
These are hubs such as Google Home Speaker, Amazon’s Alexa, and Apple HomePod. Think of them like our very own Jervis from Iron Man to help us with the everyday. You can ask it what the weather’s going to be like, to turn on Netflix, or get your bedside light ready. Now, as popularity starts to grow and we see more and more brands embracing the technology, we’ll start to see more and more voice activated home appliances. And with prices starting from the $50 mark, these are a very affordable introduction into the world of home automation.
Telstra Smart Home
This is a home automation system which will allow you to do control things from afar. If you’ve been to the movies lately, you may have seen the ad for it. It allows you to switch off your hair straighteners/iron/fan using smart plugs, control the lights, or check the kids have arrived home safely. We’re starting to see these sorts of technologies as a standard inclusion in new homes and renovations.
Yes, that’s right, even your splashback can be smart. In 2017 CES (a US tech-trade show), Whirlpool revealed its interactive kitchen prototype. A smart splash back is a screen which can do all sorts of intuitive things such as, scan the contents of your fridge, pre-heat the oven, remind you to stir, it even scans barcodes and suggest recipes.