22 Apr Are Tablets and Smartphones Capable of Making Smart “Homes”?
According to the New York Times, home automation technologies like lighting and climate controls have evolved in the last few years to become smarter and more usable. Why? It’s partially due to the introduction of programming from smartphones and tablets.
What kind of programs can make your home a “smart” home?
Save money on your heating bills.
Programmable thermostats allow people to create schedules for automatically adjusting the temperature in their homes. Figuring out how to create schedules can be so labor-intensive or tedious that most families up manually turning the heat up and down, defeating the purpose of the device.
A start-up called Nest is designed to learn heating preferences automatically over time so it does not have to be programmed. After a few days of noting when a family manually turns the heat down at night before bed and up in the morning, it can begin making those adjustments on its own. A motion sensor in the thermostat also indicates whether or not someone is home and regulates a home climate more efficiently.
One really cool feature is that it is connected to the home Wi-Fi network, allowing members to adjust temperatures through a Nest iPhone app from anywhere: lying in bed or sitting in a taxi on the way home from the airport.
Light the way.
Similarly, light controls can also add a sense of comfort and security to a home. WeMo is a line of products that uses Wi-Fi to allow control of household devices from an app on any Apple iOS device. Lamps and space heaters can be plugged into the WeMo Switch, which in turn plugs into an ordinary power outlet.
From your iPhone, you can remotely turn a lamp on and off while away from home, as well as create a schedule for lighting your house.
An upgraded version of the switch comes with a motion sensor that can turn lights on when it detects someone occupying a room.
What other automated features would you like to see for your home?