smart doesn’t always mean an easy home
Just ask Ken Hutchinson. Mr.
Hutchinson, a technical professional, hopes to have the option to control the lights in his family\'s centuryold, eight-
The Victorian bedroom in Brooklyn is on the phone to make it look like someone is staying while the family is away.
At 2013, he bought Z-
Wireless Home automation components that control outdoor and indoor lights, partial wall sockets and door locks.
But it turned out to be a \"difficult task\" to build the system \".
Eventually he had the lights working remotely, but the door lock never worked, so he gave up trying. Still, Mr.
Hutchinson has not completely abandoned home automation.
He installed an Internet last fall.
The thermostat connected by Ecobee has remote temperature sensors in different rooms.
This time, it was a very different experience.
\"It\'s much easier,\" he said . \"
\"This is what I want in the end: ignite it, take some time to set it up, and then it works.
\"Now, even a technician can set up a remote
Control the light switch or thermostat and operate it over the phone.
Advances in technology, including speech recognition, artificial intelligence and more economical sensors, make home automation easier to use. Cheaper, too.
Smart home is not perfect yet
Or very easy.
But if you haven\'t used the technology yet, maybe it\'s time to start thinking.
The first thing you need to know is.
Smart home technology is an all-inclusive term that includes home appliances and devices connected to the Internet so you can view and control them remotely using your phone, tablet or computer.
This may mean being able to turn on a light, or to control and monitor almost everything in the house, including heating and cooling, security cameras, lawn sprinklers, televisions, sound, robotic vacuum cleaners, doorbell, door lock, light, air quality, fire alarm, baby monitor, etc.
That means you always get the answer to the question, \"Did I leave the stove on?
Smart devices solve home problems, large and small.
For Adam Justice, vice president of Grid Connect, the Connect sense socket manufactured by the company ended a permanent row.
\"It solved the problem that my wife and I were in bed arguing about who got up and turned off the lights,\" he said . \".
\"So you can say it solves the marriage problem. ”Internet-
The networked thermostat solves a bigger problem, namely, energy saving, although most people may buy them to increase comfort and save money.
Nest, another company that makes smart thermostats, says it has saved 7.
3 billion kilowatts-
Since 2011, electricity per hour has been sufficient to provide 7 years of electricity to 10,000 households, and it is estimated that the average user of the company can save about 13% of the cost per year, or about $138.
If you stick to a single system
Say, all lights or power outlets from the same manufacturer-
Installation is very simple.
But most likely you\'ll want to use products from more than one company, and that\'s the difficulty: different brands use different technologies and they don\'t always talk to each other.
In order to solve this problem, various companies are trying to become a general translation and central controller for all home equipment.
The current leaders in this work are Apple, HomeKit and Amazon Echo and Alexa assistants.
Both use voice control, so you can tell your various lights and switch what you want them to do without having to open a separate app for each.
Apple and Amazon share software with other manufacturers, so many companies\' products work reliably under central control.
Other competitors include Google, which is developing its home voice service. control system;
Samsung has a system called SmartThings that works with Alexa;
Microsoft hinted that its voice assistant, Cortana, could eventually be used for home control.
The main attraction of Apple HomeKit is that it is relatively easy to set up and use.
The device is paired with your phone or tablet, just like you are connecting a Bluetooth headset or speaker, with only a few more steps.
This fall, the company\'s next software update will Group all controls on one screen so you can run your entire house from one app.
Cons: HomeKit does not have as many accessories as other systems.
Amazon Echo\'s Alexa is more powerful.
Some users find that the voice recognition of the system works better than Siri, and there is an IFTTT application (
The first letter of the computer command, acronym, \"if so \")
So you can design your own commands.
Users can also share commands they make, such as automatically turning off GE Wi-
When your phone, watch or tablet is out of Bluetooth range or other photos of anyone who sends a welcome camera doorbell to your phone by pressing Netatmo, Fi Connect oven.
But a technique like this requires some understanding.
How to set up and manage.
Neither Apple nor Amazon have made plugs, switches, and sensors for their systems to run, which is why these systems can be pieced together by technology.
Wi-some accessories for communicationFi;
Others use Bluetooth, radio, or wires or combinations.
Of course, smart home accessories manufacturers also have their own complete system.
Insteon has built a signal conversion center that allows Siri or Alexa to talk to more than 100 devices it makes, the company said.
But any quick investment in
There is a risk in changing new technologies, and if the brand is less prominent, the risk will be greater.
Ask those smart ones-
Home hubs from Revolv.
Since Google acquired the company in 2014 and shut down the servers of Revolv, the hub they invested in is now completely useless.
Once you have installed and run a simple accessory like the on/off switch, you should feel comfortable enough to try something more complicated.
You can start by creating a scene that uses a single voice command to send instructions to multiple devices.
This may take some time to set up as you have to tell the central control agency what you want each individual device to do.
But by making a simple command like \"Let\'s watch a movie\" You can turn off the curtains, the lights dim, and the TV and DVD players turn on.
Philips Hue light introduces the scene world to many people.
Blake latterridge, who works in network technology at advertising company Ogilvy & Mather, bought the Hue bulb after reading the article that light therapy can help him suffer from insomnia.
He set the light bulb to a stimulating white color.
The day is blue, and then by using the \"scene\" feature, program them to gradually dim and turn yellow at night.
\"There is a new scene every hour,\" said Mr. Rutledge said.
He did not stop there.
He created other scenes for watching TV, listening to music, and having dinner.
There are a total of more than a dozen.
\"At this point,\" he said, \"I can\'t go back to the normal light bulb.
As far as smart home technology is concerned, it still has a way to go.
Phil Dumas, president of UniKey, says it needs to be simpler and more reliable, and his software works on the Kwikset Kevin internet
Connect the door lock.
Kevin makes door locks like many car locks and unlocks when the identified phone or fob is off.
It goes further, connects with the Nest thermostat, adjusting the room temperature according to the preferences of the person who walks in.
That\'s not enough, Sir. Dumas said.
He explained that if you follow a predictable procedure, \"after a few times it will ask, \'When you get home, it\'s getting dark and you turn on the lights in the hallway, then open ESPN;
Do you want us to do this?
But easier said than done.
\"It\'s so simple to understand IOT 2.
People think we are there and we are not there . \"Dumas said. “We are at 1.
There are a lot of values there, but 2.
The place we need to go is 0.
\"Most smart home devices I \'ve tried are very simple.
But, the more I pile up on the Web, the more things that flash.
My suggestion is: to have as few brands as possible, or to give up using some apps instead of voice control.
Certified products use Apple hardware and software, which makes it easier to install and more reliable to connect;
Adding a Lutron socket to control light is almost as simple as adding a Bluetooth device.
But as usual, Siri occasionally misunderstands me and tries to make a phone call when I try to adjust the thermostat.
When I left Wi-
Fi range, I can\'t use voice control at all because I don\'t have a third
Deliver commands on behalf of or later Apple TV. (
This fall\'s software update promises to solve the problem by allowing the iPad to provide the same functionality. )
Voice of Amazon Echo-Amazon Echo
Control Assistant, hybrid intelligent control-
Home devices with other personal assistant tasks such as calling Uber or checking your credit card balance, which can be problematic if Alexa is not a good listener --
Much better than Siri.
But it\'s not as portable as your phone, so you need a $30 Bluetooth voice remote (like I used)
Or an Echo point of $90 (
Mini version of Echo)
If you leave the room where you installed Echo.
Alexa can sometimes be very picky and understand what you\'re talking about, but ask you to rephrase it anyway.
LutronLutron, a company that has made dimmers since the 1960 s, sells a smaller smart-
Home light switch, it is easy to replace the existing switch in my home.
The company also produces larger square sockets hanging on the wall for the convenience of renting r with the controller.
The best part is that when I turn the switch off, the switch gracefully darkens the lights.
ElgatoElgato manufactures many accessories, including indoor air-
Compact wall plugs for quality sensors, weather stations and tracking energy consumption.
They are all easy to connect with Bluetooth, but the range is limited: I have to walk to the door closest to the sensor when I want to check the external temperature.
You need an Apple TV outside.
Or an iPad after the software update)
To pass the command, the attachment needs to be around 25 feet.
The initial setup is not difficult, but some work needs to be done to find some Philips tone controls.
I will never be able to get Siri to operate it, though it may be because I didn\'t set it up correctly --
This suggests that it may be easier to set up.
Like many LEDs, Hue bulbs are expensive (a hub-and-three-
Light bulb starter kit nearly $200)
But they are much longer than standard bulbs, so I will use them in the most difficult timesto-reach sockets.