While we haven’t quite reached the age of flying cars and robot butlers, smart home technologies have really taken off in past few years with new devices constantly being introduced for every room in your house. We’ve put together a quick introduction to some of the biggest home tech trends that are happening today.
Can’t We All Just Get Along?
Integration may be the most important new development for today’s smart homes. Instead of having a lot of separate elements working independently, the best of today’s smart tech devices can communicate with each other to work seamlessly throughout your entire home, providing a more efficient and satisfying user experience. Just be sure to choose time-saving tech that you’ll actually use.
Your Command Centre
For an efficient smart home, it’s a good idea to start with a central control device like Google’s Nest Hub or Amazon’s Echo Show which have touch screens, voice control and even respond to quick hand gestures. These devices can be used to control music, lighting, heating, security and, if you want, even monitor your sleep patterns and breathing.
Home Comfort Made Easy
Smart thermostats have been around for a while now and are a great place to start. Besides making it easy to program and control the temperature in your home—even when you are far away—some models now incorporate humidity sensors and can link with air conditioners, monitors, and smart air purifiers to ensure optimal air quality in your home at all times. Studies have shown that properly used smart thermostats are more efficient to run and can reduce your energy costs. Learn more about smart thermostats and what’s best for your needs here.
Bright Ideas For Your Home
Lighting is another easy place to make your home smarter.
It can be as simple as switching some of your light bulbs to one of the many brands of smart bulbs. These allow you to program or control your lights with your phone or other device. To control multiple lights, go a step further and install smart light switches. Even when you’re not at home, you can turn them on and off and dim them at will. You can program your lights to change colour when you receive an email or have them slowly fade to darkness as you fall asleep. Mimic a sunrise or sunset, try an energizing blue or perhaps a calming orange.
Another benefit of a smarter home is the ability to monitor your home from almost anywhere. Smart security systems range from simple do-it-yourself kits to more elaborate systems that use professional installation and monitoring.
You can start with a few standalone items such as indoor and outdoor cameras, smart locks, or video doorbells. Some newer doorbells are now touchless and others can take a potential guest’s temperature to assess any potential health issues. More professional systems can include motion sensors, cameras, glass break sensors and water sensors to warn about leaks before major damage occurs.
Get Fit The Smart Way
Exercising at home is more popular than ever, and by incorporating smart technology, more effective and engaging. Smart exercise bikes like Peloton or Echelon are designed to mimic the experience of riding on an actual road let you participate in live or on-demand virtual classes. Lululemon’s Mirror is actually an LCD screen that provides a wide variety of instructor-led classes and allows you to check your form and monitor your heartrate. FightCamp’s home boxing bag has sensors that tell you how hard you’re hitting and guides you through your workout.
Like most fitness equipment, these options can be pricey, but if your budget allows they can be another important part of your smart home experience.
The Smartest Room In The House
When it comes to smart rooms in your house, don’t forget about the bathroom. Smart faucets can be touchless and let you pre-heat or cool water and control usage to significantly reduce waste. Interactive mirrors have built-in displays to share weather forecasts, traffic, news or appointment reminders while you get ready in the morning. Smart toothbrushes assess your brushing technique and offer tips for better oral hygiene.
Today’s smart toilets can heat the seat, flush, dry and open and close the lid. Many models come complete with night lights, foot warmers, scales, and self-cleaning functions. Smart toilets can reduce wasted water and some even assess possible health issues.
Don’t Forget Your 4-Legged Friends
Pet Tech can be functional, fun and sometimes just plain silly. We all know the pet cameras that hand out treats when we’re not home. But how about an automatic ball launcher, a self-cleaning litter box, or your pet’s personal Go-Pro! The Go-Smart Pet Leash acts similar to your personal FitBit and a GPS Tracker in your pet’s collar is definitely a SMART idea.
Make Sure They Play Well Together
As you can see, the choices for making your home smarter are virtually endless and new innovations are happening all the time. When choosing smart devices for your home, it is important to remember that not all technology will easily integrate to work together, so check for compatibility with your existing devices before you make a purchase decision.