A rigid line once divided home and computer. That was only a few years ago, but the rise of the mobile generation has washed away this line, blurring what is and isn’t computer-controlled. Let’s take a peek into a future that’s happening today and see where computer smarts has taken root.
Heating and cooling controls for the home now have the capacity to learn the usage patterns of occupants. The Nest controller is a prime example of this revolutionary outgrowth of mobile communications, a palm-sized module that’s fixed to a wall and infused with learning capabilities. Such a device will learn which rooms are commonly in use, what temperature settings are generally set, and use this data to maximize energy savings.
Smart Security Solutions
A legion of security companies have chosen to adopt wireless connectivity installations and keyless entry systems. NorthStar Alarm is one company that uses this approach, choosing to integrate traditional sensors into wireless home networks in an effort to safeguard property and life. There are IP cameras, fire detectors, carbon monoxide sensors, and motion detectors to take on the roles of wary home sentinels. A central control panel chatters across the air and transmits to smartphone Apps that notify users of danger, such as a boundary breach.
Networking the Smart Home
Smartphones use a combination of WiFi and Bluetooth to communicate with each other. The ideal App can pair a smartphone with a device in a matter of seconds, and this is the very principle being adopted by smart homes popping up across the country. Sensors and cameras are one example, as are the home appliances that sit in our entertainment systems and kitchens, each using IP addresses and Bluetooth pairing to regulate their performance.
Appliances of the Future
The kitchens in our rapidly transforming homes are incorporating tiny microprocessors, sensors, and faux intelligence to check if food has gone bad in a refrigerator by reading bar codes on a package of food, and communicating with an App to update a digital shopping list. Similarly, stoves and washing machines are focusing on energy savings by cooking smarter and using less water per clean cycle.
We’ve only scratched the surface of the coming of the smart home. Check out health-related electronic appliances for yet another section of domestic life technology is influencing, and explore smart wearables. There are even articles of clothing that integrate with home technology, such as a Bluetooth-equipped scale that monitors the progress of a daily workout. The tech boom continues to spread tech deeper and deeper into all aspects of our lives.