Understanding Smart Home Technology and IoT

home interior

Smart home technology is the automation of appliances that includes security door locks, heating systems, and lighting through smart communication and the Internet, providing convenience and comfort to homeowners.

History of Home Automation

The attempt to develop smart home appliances began in the late 1800s. The concept only came to reality in the 1900s when Echo IV invented the first-ever kitchen device designed to automate shopping lists and adjust the room temperature. But it flopped in the market due to an unreasonable price.

In 1971, the microcontroller made technology more accessible, then here came the invention of Gerontechnology, which aimed to make the lives of senior people more convenient and comfortable. In the 2000s, the Internet started to emerge, so did home automation. Because smart appliances are made much cheaper, more consumers started using them for convenience. Today 69% of households in the US are using intelligent devices.

What Are the Examples of Smart Home Technology?

Garage-door opener- the best alternative for traditional keys that automatically locks and unlocks doors. It can also be set up to grant access to expected visitors.

Smart TVs- includes voice recognition to connect to the Internet, allowing users to browse the web, watch movies, and stream music.

A Programmable thermostat- increases the temperature when the owners are home and lowers it when they are out. It adjusts to the home members’ daily routine.

An Automated lighting system- auto-regulate themselves depending on the light availability.

An intelligent surveillance camera- allows owners to monitor their homes, regardless of the location. It also comes with facial recognition features, allowing them to detect intruders and notify authorities.

Smart refrigerators- can provide a shopping list to the owner regularly and keep track of food expiration dates.

House monitoring system- detects electrical surge and automatically turns off the appliances to prevent damage.

Pros and Cons of Smart Home Technology

smart home control with tablet

Advantages

  • By adjusting to the homeowner’s needs, smart home technology provides superior convenience and comfort. For instance, they need not set up the room temperature or humidity when they arrive home.
  • With home automation, elderly loved ones can get around the house without any problem. Smart appliances can make dishwashing and coffee preparation easier for them.
  • Despite the owners being away, they can monitor their house real time and get in touch with the authority in case of an emergency. This can make them feel more at ease.
  • As devices automatically turn off by themselves when nobody is home, smart home technology also lowers your electricity bill. The homeowners don’t have to worry if they unplug the appliance or not.

Disadvantages

  • The complexity of smart home appliances serves as a major drawback. As we all know, not all homeowners are technical, which can be an inconvenience the first time. Manufacturers provide support and try to make home automation simpler, though.
  • Because smart home technology relies on the Internet, it can be susceptible to cyberattacks. When hackers discover the home data, they can invade the house. Worse, it can also lead to identity theft and unauthorized transactions.
  • Smart home manufacturers can collect users’ information to gain insights on how their products work, which concerns many homeowners.
  • You might have a problem getting smart home appliances to work without a stable Internet connection.

How to Set Up Home Automation?

Smart home technology follows a standard protocol to communicate with each other. ZigBee and Z-Wave radio waves play a major role here. Both determine the fastest route, identify the target device, then add the instruction to the network using a series of channels. You might need the help of a technician to set up the installation.

The Future of Home Automation

Research shows that by 2022, 63 million more homes in the US will be considered smart in addition to 130 million homes that qualify as of today. With the advancement of artificial intelligence and machine learning technology, we can expect a transition from voice recognition to complete automation. Robotic helpers that can do all the household chores, including laundry, dishwashing, vacuuming, and ironing, will also be prominent.

And despite the high price tag associated with them, market experts say that people are more likely to spend $123 billion on these smart devices in the future. As technology continues to develop, home automation will sure offer something far better than what’s already available today. Cyberattack still poses a serious threat. As more devices connect to the Internet, hackers will find a way to infiltrate and steal information. Increased home data security is advisable.

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