Smart home devices are technology systems that can be automatically activated by a phone, tablet or sometimes by voice alone. These devices can make your day-to-day life more convenient and contribute to a pleasant atmosphere, but they can also increase the safety of your home. Google, Amazon and Apple have built systems that can centralize these devices and make them easier to activate together. However, you can mix and match with which smart devices you install in your home to make your life and the lives of family members a little easier. Here is our roundup of five types of smart devices and what they can do for your home:
1. Smart lighting
Automating your lights with smart devices can add convenience and safety to your home. A few types of smart lighting systems exist. A few examples include smart bulbs that work on timers to turn on and off when you want them to, smart switches that can be activated without physically moving to the switch and smart plugs that can be turned on and off from the comfort of a phone or tablet. Smart lights can make the home safer since cords from light fixtures are one of the top reasons for injuries from falling in the home. Outdoor lighting like porch lights and displays like Christmas lights can be especially beneficial to set up on a smart device, since these tend to be timed and/or difficult to access the plugs for as part of day to day life.
2. Smart appliances
Smart appliances in the kitchen can make cooking much less of a hassle. Setting a crockpot, microwave or blender to begin cooking from a phone, tablet, or a voice command means you can get started on the process from outside the home or from a different room entirely. This applies to the convenience of turning devices off as well (not sure if you turned off an appliance before you left the house? You can turn it off in a completely different city). For people who want even more special features, a smart refrigerator can add all kinds of perks from organizing your ingredients, creating grocery lists, catching maintenance issues as they come up, and saving you money on your energy bill.
3. Smart security
Security systems are some of the most popular smart devices in the U.S. Setting up outdoor lights on a timer, alarm systems and security cameras are a few ways smart systems can make your home safer. Smart security systems can allow you to access your camera from a computer, phone or tablet away from home, so you can check on your home’s safety even if you’re not there.
4. Smart comfort
Smart thermostats are a common way to make your home more comfortable with smart devices, since being able to control the temperature of your home from outside has quite a few benefits. For example, if you are living in a hot or cold climate and are on your way home from an errand, being able to have the house the temperature you want when you arrive is a huge convenience. Got pets? Keep them cool if you’re away from home and the temperature suddenly spikes! Smart cleaning appliances can also keep your home more comfortable—consider cleaning robots like Roombas to help deal with the day to day maintenance of a clean house, especially if you have pets in the home.
5. Smart entertainment
Finally, smart systems can make entertainment for you, your family and guests much easier. Setting up a smart speaker, smart WiFi connection and smart TV systems that work out of a central hub—such as a centralized Amazon, Google or Apple device—means you can control the entertainment systems in multiple rooms throughout your house via your phone, tablet or voice commands. Smart entertainment systems can also sync up a few different systems, such as light displays and music working together.
Smart devices can add to the safety and convenience of your home by streamlining the process of setting up and maintaining your technology. Whether it’s setting up lights on a timer so you don’t have to think about flipping switches on and off at night, reducing the amount of cords and cables in your home you might trip on, optimizing the energy expenditure of your appliances to save money on your electric bill or setting up a smart entertainment system to save trips up and down the stairs, smart devices can improve your lifestyle and make things easier for family and guests.