The Smart Home Automation that Can Make Your Life Easier
Smart homes may have seemed like a pipe dream once, and only existed in an episode of The Jetsons even before that. Nowadays, smart devices are not only easier to find, they are just as easy to install. Smart home automation brings convenience and comfort to your everyday life. As the tech market expands with new innovations, consumers have more options at a variety of price points to decide what ways and where to upgrade.
From room to room, here’s a guide to outfitting your home with the smart home automation devices you need to make your life easier.
The smart hub acts as the centralized port for all of your smart home needs. Step into your home’s entryway and instantly tweak the temperature or make sure your favorite show’s recording, before you’ve even set down your bags and taken off your coat. Some favorite models include:
- Samsung SmartThings boasts compatibility with over 200 devices, user-friendly Android and iPhone apps, and pairs with Amazon Echo or Alexa.
- Amazon Echo Dot is compact, measuring just 3.3 x 3.3 inches, and offers third-party developer support and Amazon Skills functionality.
- Wink 2 has a straightforward pairing process so you can connect in less than 5 minutes, and it pairs with over 530 different device models.
Smart security systems protect your home (and the expensive smart technology inside), so they’re an obvious priority. Choose 24/7 professional monitoring or self-monitored systems to meet your needs. Most systems have a secured keypad, door and window systems, motion detectors, and sometimes cameras. Top-rated choices include:
- ADT Pulse offers name recognition, coming from a brand that’s served homeowners for years, and professional surveillance.
- Frontpoint Home Security System has easy, DIY-friendly installation steps, and you can pair it with your own smart cameras and sensors.
- Abode Home Security Starter Kit gives you non-contract protection, a flexible choice for homeowners who may want to sell in the near future.
Have you ever wanted to talk to your fridge and actually get a response? You’re in luck: Samsung recently came out with the Family Hub 2.0, the world’s first smart fridge. Voice recognition lets you update your grocery list, order food online, search recipes, check when the eggs are going to expire, and even ask what the weather’s like outside.
A roomy 21.5-inch touchscreen uses eco-friendly LED backlights, and you can use the screen to “hang” notes and photos on the fridge without messing with magnets. Fascinatingly, there’s a camera, so you can peek into the fridge without actually opening the fridge door.
Even most non-smart households have smart TVs nowadays, as they’ve dropped in price and you can now find them at your local Wal-Mart or Target. A smart TV combines all of your watching services in one package: Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Instant, YouTube, and more. High-end smart TVs also boast features such as 3D support, automatic LED dimming, and program suggestions based on your watching habits. Some quality models include:
- LG OLED C7, which gives 360 VR support, an LG-exclusive “Magic Remote,” and slick navigation with plenty of app functionality.
- TCL P-Series 55P607, offering Roku TV, which gives you smart TV show and movie suggestions and lets you search over 300 apps at once for what you want to see.
- Sony Android TV, which connects to your smartphone, with voice search plug-ins, and even Google Cast for effortless watching.
Keep a smart thermostat in the living room, integrated with other rooms throughout the house, and control the entire home’s temperature from the part of the house you access the most often. In addition to the convenience factor, a smart thermostat gives you greater control over your energy bill, so it’s definitely an investment worth making. Choose from models that include:
- Ecobee3, an ideal choice for large houses that require zone-based monitoring and schedule-based temperature changes.
- Ecobee3 Lite, a budget-friendly version of the aforementioned favorite: it includes everything except remote temperature sensors and occupancy monitoring.
- Emerson Sensi, a super-budget home thermostat that’s great for micro houses and townhouses, featuring remote app controls and temperature cycling.
The future is here. Smart home automations are now DIY-friendly and fully customizable, so you can add convenience to every aspect of your home. If you’re on the fence, it’s time to get off and start making changes that make your life easier, maximize your home’s value, and help conserve energy.