An article by Bella Robinson
Smart homes have the potential to make our lives easier, better, and more efficient. Tech giants are already manufacturing new smart gadgets that will collaboratively bring the smart future to life. Voice-activated smoke detectors and thermostats, controlled smart lights, as well as smartwatches and smartphones are already on the market. Indeed, it is now clear that smart homes weren’t a pipe dream like many people previously thought.
But because the smart home technology is new to most people, configuring one can be a daunting challenge. The technology incorporates a wide range of phone apps, premium subscriptions, and tons of security sign-ups and scans. All these requirements can easily put you off. But they shouldn’t. If your dream is to fill your home with smart devices and eventually automating it fully, we are here to help you actualize that dream. Read on to discover the first 3 steps to getting your smart home up and running.
Prepping Your Home’s Internet Connectivity
Your journey to a smart home starts with a fast internet connection. Ensure that your Wi-Fi router is the newest model and is best positioned for optimal Wi-Fi strength. Don’t incorporate any new smart devices in the home with a weak, outdated Wi-Fi connection. The router needs to have radios that are compatible with Thread, Z-Wave, 6LowPAN, and Bluetooth Low Energy, among other modern communication technologies.
With your Wi-Fi upgraded to the modern communication protocols, you are guaranteed that your router will not become obsolete in a few years and neither will the smart devices put your home at a serious security risk. The positioning of the router is also of paramount importance. Ensure that it is in centrally positioned so that smart devices and appliances within the home can connect with it easily and strongly. The disadvantage of positioning your router in one corner or in the artic is that it will be submitting weak signals to your smart devices and in extreme cases, it will not connect to some of the devices.
When shopping for a router, ensure that it matches your home’s interior décor so that you don’t have to hide it in the basement. If your kitchen is the most central place in the home, you should start thinking of kitchen remodeling so that you can add a shelf or a counter on which the router will be sitting.
Readying Your Home for Smart Home Tech
Now that your home’s internet connection is beyond reproach, it is time to acquire a smart home assistant. This is a hub through which all your smart devices and appliances will connect to the Wi-Fi network, send and share data through the internet, and back to your monitoring device (e.g. a smartphone). Good examples of smart home assistants are the Amazon’s Echo, Apple’s Home Pod, and Google’s Home Assistant. Note that you should buy the hub before picking up any smart home tech so that you can be sure that they are all compatible.
The next step will be to design every room in the home and ensure that the products in the room will work well in the smart home setup. Make a list of all devices and appliances by room, their capabilities, expected efficiency, and accessibility, as well as the accessories needed to make each device work seamlessly. Note that if a device isn’t remotely accessible, no matter how advanced it is, it will be of no use in the smart home.
Acquiring Smart Home Tech
Your home is now ready for smart technology. Some of the most in-demand devices include the following:
· Smart speakers
The Google Assistant-powered Google Mini or Amazon Alexa-powered Echo Dot are some of the most popular smart speakers worth checking out.
· Smart thermostats
A smart thermostat helps you control your home’s temperature remotely. It definitely should be among your first smart acquisitions.
· Smart doorbells
Install smart cameras and link them to voice assistants and smartphone apps so that you can easily monitor activities at your front door.
· Smart lights
Install Wi-Fi bulbs and switches in the home, and then connect it to the internet or Bluetooth. That will enable you to control your lighting systems from your smartphone.
Smart technology is here to stay, and we should prep our homes in readiness for the foolproof home security and efficiency potential it is promising. The good thing is that you can enjoy the full benefits of smart home technology regardless of your tech expertise, or lack of it.