Not everybody has a smart phone or tablet. But those that do want to use it for everything – social media, gaming, even controlling their television sets. Now they may be able to control their entire home, inside and out.
Smart thermostats have been at the leading edge of this wi-fi revolution. Programmable thermostats have been around for some time, letting you set it and forget it while still allowing the occasional change, improving efficiency in both cooling and heating of your home. With smart thermostats, those occasional changes will be made for you.
After installation, these thermostats begin learning your habits and, after a while, know your schedule better than you do. With enough information, these thermostats will know when you’re home, when you’re asleep, what season it is, and more. And you can make any adjustments to these automatically generated settings from your phone.
Working While You Sleep
Voice-Activated home systems are beginning to gain popularity – a few voice commands can turn on the tunes, give traffic updates, and even order a pizza. But what about when you’re asleep?
While you’re counting sheep, new sleep technology can monitor noise, light, temperature, and more, relaying that information to an app on your device. Some trackers can clip to a pillow, keeping track of your movements throughout the night. Like Santa Claus, these trackers know when you are sleeping and know when you’re about to awaken, triggering an app on your phone to control the lights, air-conditioning, or coffee maker based on your sleeping patterns.
How Does Your Garden Grow?
Taking a week-long vacation in the middle of July and worried about your yard’s survival? Many sprinkler systems can be set up to water the grass, plants, and shrubs at specific times. But what if an unusual few days of rain occur while you’re out of town?
With the ability to connect irrigation systems to the internet via wi-fi, some systems allow you to set amounts, times, and zones for watering your yard – all from a device or computer. Other features include adding soil and plant type information and checking local forecasts to adjust watering.
You’ll still need someone to look after the dog, though.
Home Never Alone
If you are leaving your home for an extended period of time – or even just the night – your phone can help keep your home safe, too. From simple door and window sensors that will send an alert when triggered to systems that employ door locks, surveillance cameras, and lights. All of these can be controlled automatically or through your mobile device.
These are just a few of the ways smart devices improve the efficiency of a home as well as keep it safe. And while status updates and selfies are fine, making your home secure and more comfortable isn’t a bad use of the internet either.