As tech companies continue to innovate an impressive rate, almost everything we interact with is now “smart.” From smartphones to smart home entertainment devices, technology and automation is taking over our homes and lives. What is a smart home, and are they really more secure?
What is a Smart Home?
A smart home is just a place of dwelling which incorporates smart technology. This includes appliances and devices in the home which can be automatically controlled remotely using a smart device, such as a phone or tablet.
Smart devices and appliances are expanding at a rapid rate, giving homeowners more control over their property. Homes can be built with smart appliances such as lighting and heating, or homeowners can invest in switches and meters which can be connected via a mobile app. These can be useful for switching on lights and heating the home while nobody is inside – to improve security or prevent pipes from freezing which the owners are on holiday, for example.
Some homes now have a ‘smart home hub’ which allows you to connect and control a variety of appliances and gadgets. Some energy firms are also offering customers smart meters or thermostats to help them control their usage. Gone are the days when central heating systems relied on timers to warm up the house before you return from a long day at work! Now it’s as simple as one touch on a smartphone during the commute.
Smart Security Systems
It’s not just plug sockets and radiators which can be controlled remotely – home security systems have also got smarter. Some intruder alarms and CCTV systems are also utilising remote technology, to allow homeowners to see what’s happening at their property when they’re not physically there.
All you need is access to a device – a laptop, tablet or mobile phone – to enable remote viewing. If you have modern CCTV cameras installed at the property, you should now be able to view them at any time from anywhere in the world. This gives peace of mind to homeowners who are on holiday, or want to check the safety of a relative while they are not at home.
So do smart homes have the potential to change the way we live? Absolutely. Smart devices can improve home security by making the property look occupied when it could be a target for burglaries, and can give homeowners the peace of mind they need to leave home for as long as required through access to remote CCTV images. Additionally, smart meters can increase energy efficiency and identify opportunities for saving money on bills.
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