Did you know you can make your home more secure and smarter with few low-price gadgets? Well, the good news is, there are myriad ways to start, and making your home smarter in a low-cost manner.
All of the devices and services that make a home more secure and automated, will be different for every individual. As a matter of fact, whether you know it or not, chances are that you already have some type of smart home gadget at your home or at office.
For example, we do have LED light bulbs that can dim or turn on using your smartphone. Guess what, that’s a smart home device. We own a webcam installed that monitors our windows or front door, or perhaps the baby’s room, my friend that is a smart home.
Amazingly, for less than fifty dollars, you can test the smart home waters with a smart plug. By simply connecting this device to a floor lamp, and you can set the plug to turn the lamp on automatically when it gets dark from the outside.
Today, I’m listing down different components that make up a smart home, what they do, and the top picks that I’ve selected for you.
For lights, they can do wonders for you: For starters, smart lights can lower your energy bill. As, all of the smart lights are LEDs, which consume far less electricity than incandescent and even fluorescent bulbs. But, you can also control smart lights via your smartphone, and you can set schedules for when these lights turn on and off.
Top pick: For most, the Philips Hue White A19 Starter Kit is a good place to start. Philips hue includes two bulbs and a bridge to connect the lights to your router. What’s good with Philips hue is that the bridge can support up to 50 lights, which can be dimmed. In addition, they work with a wide range of smart home systems, which includes Alexa and Apple HomeKit.
I listed smart speakers here because they will do so much more than taking out your phone to control your smart home devices. This smart speaker lets you merely speak commands to get your gadgets to do your bidding. In addition, smart speakers can tell you the news and weather, road conditions, read you recipes, even order a pizza. Also, they can play music too.
Top pick: Smart speakers—Amazon Echo is the first smart speaker, and it’s still the best. It produces good enough audio to be the primary speaker for an apartment or living room. Moreover, the Alexa voice assistant can do more than the competition. Simply put, it has thousands of third-party skills and the vast array of Alexa-compatible smart home devices that you can control while sitting on a couch.
Amazon Echo is priced at $179.99 at Amazon.
Most of us today do not completely know about Smart Plugs, and what they can do for you. To put it simply, a smart plug or switch is the easiest and cheapest way to make any appliance in your home, a smart home device for example, a lamp to the smart switch, and then plug the switch into the wall, and voila, you’ll be able to control the lamp from your smartphone. Moreover, you can set schedules for the plugs to turn on and off, and connect them to other smart home devices.
Top pick: I chose iHome ISP5 SmartPlug for my readers, because there are a lot of good smart plugs on the market, but iHome ISP5 SmartPlug is the best. It can cost you around $35. It works with Alexa, Apple HomeKit, Samsung SmartThings and Nest.
The term “Security Cameras” reflects the purpose of the smart home device and what they can provide you. To elaborate, a security camera can keep an eye on your house, office, and restaurants to keep tabs on who is coming and leaving, all from your smartphone, tablet or laptop.
In addition, the better cameras will also have night vision and can be linked with other smart home devices instantly. In short, the camera can start recording when you leave home and what happens in your absence.
Top pick: I chose the Netgear’s Arlo Q, as it has an excellent video quality and motion detection facility, making it flexible for scheduling and monitoring user interface. In addition, Netgear offers you a generous 1GB of storage or seven days of cloud recording of events for up to five cameras, for absolutely free.
A renowned mobile app development New Jersey based company stated in their blog that, to understand the working of smart home deeper, you can get into ever-more complex setups, linking multiple devices together so that activating one causes all the others to switch on or off, as per the needs.
The term smart home reflects any of the devices or appliances that is connected to the internet that you can control using a smartphone or whose function you can automate on your own.