Virtually everything in your home, including lights, thermostats and power sockets, can be connected to your WiFi and controlled remotely through a mobile device. But making your home smart can be a little mind-boggling, as there are so many accessories that work in tandem with others, and some are superior to others. Here’s a little help sorting the wheat from the chaff in finding products to make your home smart.
Choosing your assistant
Virtual voice-controlled assistants include Google Home, Amazon’s Alexa and Apple’s Siri, and they help you control smart home products through simple voice commands. These tools are all quite similar, but have different strengths that will appeal to different people, so it is worth exploring the options to find your ideal home assistant. Here is the hardware that’s available to you:
Amazon’s Alexa: Echo, Echo Dot and Echo Show
Apple’s Siri: iPhone, iPad and Apple Watch
Google’s Assistant: Google Home, Google Home Mini, Android smartphones/tablets
You can put your smart assistant to work controlling other parts of your home, but you’ll need to purchase the necessary smart equipment. Here are some popular choices:
There is a wide range of smart lighting to choose from. Some systems require a ‘bridge’, while others include a built-in WiFi connection. The latter type is simpler to set up, but will cost a little more.
Many plug-in appliances like fans, coffee makers and electric kettles can be made smart with the installation of a smart plug. This enables you to set a specific time for something to be activated, or to power it on/off remotely.
Smart thermostats like Nest connect to your WiFi so you can control them remotely with your smartphone or assistant. This means you can shut off heating when you’re not at home to save on energy, or even turn the heating on when you leave work so the house is warm when you get home.
There are other things you can take control of remotely in a smart home, like your doorbell, security system, entertainment, alarm clocks and more. If you’re struggling with adding smart features to your home in Swindon, contact EJS Electrical and we’ll help you get started.