There’s something cozy about coming home to a nice, warm house, lights aglow in the window and greeted with a soothing, “Welcome, home, family!” From your genius smart house robot!
These days, the technology exists to program your home to do just about anything: maintain a certain temperature, turn lights on at a specific time of day, and even create a shopping list whose items ship directly to your door. Depending on your personal goals for “smartening up” your home, there are several major themes around which the technology is designed:
Perimeter cameras, alarm systems, motion detectors, and doorbell cameras outdoors, and fire detection, internal cameras, and voice activated calls to 911 inside.
Smart thermostats, timed lighting, appliance monitoring (remotely turn off that oven you left on as you headed out), and solar panel monitoring.
Notifications of new releases, automatic download of gaming updates, sound design, and projection screen movements.
Best of all, each objective can be realized with minimal technical savvy, a plug and play device (a wall-mounted touchpad or a pod) and an app on your phone or laptop. Some outdoor devices may require a battery, but almost everything else is already wired into your home and just needs a little direction. You should do some research to determine which Smart Home is for you. Google Nest, Alexa by Amazon, and HomePod by Apple provide comprehensive services and a number of national and local security companies provide smart security you can install yourself (but rely on the monitoring and quick response of a trusted security firm).
As with all new technology purchases, do some self-reflection to see what you need vs. what would be overkill for you. Understand that with the low-priced hardware to get you started will come a monthly or yearly subscription for service, so be sure to budget accordingly. But once you’ve got your hub installed and your app downloaded to your device, just sit back and relax and call, “Hey Google, can you pour me some eggnog?”