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SMART HOMES - ARE YOU READY?

Wednesday 24th June 2015
Tags: Technology
Technology continues to develop at a tremendous rate and enhance our lives. Everything is heading in the ‘Smart’ direction. Smart phones, smart watches it was only a matter of time before we got ‘Smart homes’.

WHAT IS SMART HOME AUTOMATION?

Every device in your home is connected, and every device has some level of intelligence and connected and controllable through 'The Cloud' and accessible through smartphone, tablet or computer. Automation will allow all the technology in your home to be coordinated and controllable from the palm of your hand even when you’re not at home.

There are now a number of different digital companies giving homes the hook up when it comes to getting ‘smart’.

The intelligence required will at first be inputted by the user but with time the device will learn and adapt to patterns and interact with its users. With a combination of sensors and systems IoT connects everyday objects to a network, enabling objects to complete tasks without control of a person.

Cool ey ?

WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS?

Some of the benefits of smart home automation include…

Savings – Connected devices such as thermostats, smart sprinklers, Wi-Fi enabled lights, electricity monitoring outlets and water heater modules cut down on energy and water usage.  Electric bills go down when lights are automatically turned off in empty rooms, and rooms can be heated or cooled based on who's there at any given moment. Some devices can track how much energy each appliance is using and command power hoggers to use less.

Control is also improved, automation home owners will be able to control general house hold tasks even from half way across the world. Have you ever left the house, on your way to work and tormented yourself wondering if you turned the oven off? With a smart home you would no longer need to worry as you would be able to check there and then.

Convenience is enhanced, for example – no more rummaging around for your house keys as smart home integration senses when you’re approaching the front door and unlocks it for you.

Smart home automation also promises tremendous benefits for elderly people living alone. A smart home could notify the resident when it’s time to take medicine, alert hospital if someone falls, and also track how the resident is eating.  If an elderly person is a little forgetful, the smart home could perform tasks such as shutting off the water before a tub overflow or turning off the oven if the cook had wandered away. 

THE BENEFITS ARE ENDLESS, SO WHAT’S THE PROBLEM?

However in a recent article by Computer Weekly it was reported that a drop in consumer trust in technology was stunting the potential growth of smart home automation.

According to the article, the drop in trust has come about as a result of events such as the revelations of National Security Agency whistle-blower Edward Snowden and the UK government's planned surveillance legislation which have made consumers question whether the data collected by smart technology will be used for good.

There is a sense of fear present in society surrounding 'The Cloud'. Having personal security details saved in this way creates uneasiness alongside reports of hacking as well as worry of confidential details being passed to third hand party. Despite the cloud being proven to be a secure storage method, a lot of consumers are still unfamiliar with the concept making it seem more of a security risk than it is.

According to research carried out by Edelman consumers believe businesses are implementing this change for money rather than a genuine attempt to improve people’s lives.

It seems there are many benefits to making your home ‘smart’ however this is sure to come at a hefty cost which will not soften the blow to those already sceptical and fearful of the transition.

What are your thoughts? Would you invest in a smart home? Or do the same fears bother you? We’d love to hear your thoughts! Tweet us @amsourcetech.
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