So, what does smart home technology mean? It’s the ability to connect your home appliances over Wi-Fi or Bluetooth in order to control them remotely in one place like on a mobile app. For example, if you’re returning home from a cold night you can set the thermostat in advance so your homes warm and snug for when you get in. Brilliant!
According to a study, it is projected that the smart appliance global market will grow from $40 million in 2012 to $26 billion in 2019. Research by GFK found that 51% of consumers in their study believed that Smart Home technology will have the biggest impact on their life in in the next few years. But are we ready for it?
It will make home life easier no doubt. The Belkin WeMo switch is a plug socket which can be controlled through your smart phone. Left your house but realised you’ve left the living room lamp on? No problem, without having to re-renter your house to switch it off you can now whip out your phone and switch it off that way. Wake up in the morning and want a cup of tea when you get downstairs? Get your phone out and switch on the iKettle from Amazon from your bed.
It can even go as far as being able to save your life. Nest Protect smoke and CO Alarm can tell you exactly where the fire or smoke is in your home so you know which rooms to avoid. However, if all you've done is burnt your toast then you can silence the alarm through your phone.
On one hand a smart home can improve security because you can check you’ve set the security system while you’re out and if you did forget then go head and set it. But there is a security issue that this online system could be hacked into. Security researcher Anthony Rose showed how easy it was for him to access certain security lock passwords because they were not encrypted.
Additionally, there is a huge reliance on the Wi-Fi or Bluetooth connection working and if they go down then the home appliances can't be controlled. Some people may find it a scary aspect to be that reliant on Wi-Fi.
Whilst we are always looking for ways to make our lives easier would we risk being able to make toast from bed when there’s possible security issues?
Tech reviewer, Danny Winget, gives a tour of his smart home in the video below and some tips on how to convert your home to one.