Almost everything in your home, including the all essential coffee machine, security, lighting and even your front door, can be connected to your wi-fi. 10 years ago, the idea of a ‘smart home’ may have seemed impossible, but with the rise of technology, this once Sci-fi fantasy is now an achievable reality, with the help of a small and simple device.
If the idea of a ‘smart home’ is still alien to you, let’s start from the basics…
Select your smart home hub
The first step to take is to choose your smart home assistant. With so many flooding onto the market, it can be difficult to decide which is best for you. Here are our top three, accompanied with some of the market’s favourites.
All the smart home hubs range in price due to design, capability and system. Decide what you would like to be controlled by your speaker before you go on to the research stage to decide which system will suit your needs the most.
Put your speaker to work
Now for the part that none of us really want to do, read and research. We know that this takes time but unless you read up on your device, you will never know its full potential. All our selected home devices are compatible with, but not limited to, controlling your lights (bulbs specific to each device), heating/ thermostat and a house fan.
Here is exactly what you can control through your device and how
Smart lighting can be controlled by your phone and due to them being LED bulbs, they can also help to save money on your energy bills. Turning on your lights via your phone can make your holidays less of a hassle and give you more peace of mind from a security perspective. No more setting timers at the sockets, you can simply do it all on your phone!
- Our pick – Philips Smart Bulb Starter Kit , compatible with Alexa, Apple Home Kit and Google Assistant.
You may find that replacing all lightbulbs in your home to smart bulbs can start to become expensive. If you are looking to save a little bit of money this New Year, then try just switching to smart light switches. Even though this is a more cost-effective solution, it does require electrician knowledge.
- Our pick – Lightwave Dimmer, compatible with Alexa, Apple Home Kit and Google Home.
This is the easiest way to make products in your home “smart”. Simply plug a device of your choice, such as a bed side lamp, kettle or even your beloved coffee machine and control it all from either your phone, or voice-controlled assistant.
- Our pick – TP-Link Wi-Fi smart plug, compatible with Alexa and Google Home.
There is nothing worse than leaving the house and forgetting if your front door has been locked or not, or the children leaving their keys at home on your one late shift. With smart locks, you can control access to your home from your phone. Not only do you not always need a key to get in and out, you can see who has been to your home and even allow certain people in your home, from your phone. A revolutionary product.
- Our pick – August Smart Lock Pro, compatible with Alexa, Apple Home Kit and Google Home.
Yes. You heard it right. Control your vacuum cleaner from your smart device. This means no more squeezing this arduous task into your week. With the ability to start, stop and even schedule your hoover to start, you can set the cleaning for when you are doing the food shop, at work, or simply winding down for the evening. Cleaning has never been so easy.
- Our pick – iRobot Roomba Vacuum, compatible with Google Home.
Not as smart as some other devices may be, but most definitely one to invest in. A video doorbell allows you to see who is at your door no matter what time it is. Check on deliveries and anyone attempting to enter your home. Some even have a two-way voice system, allowing you to speak to those at your door. You can even connect with your smart home devices to drop in on your video doorbell.
- Our pick – Ring Video Doorbell Pro, compatible with Alexa.
Having the ability to set your thermostat has one obvious benefit, being able to set the temperature of your home from your phone, along with voice control. This is the perfect feature to any home, especially during these chilly winter months. Setting the heating on your phone before returning home or ask Alexa to turn the heating up before you get out of bed just helps to make your day a little better.
- Our pick – Ecobee, compatible with Alexa and Apple Home Kit.
The idea of a smart home may still feel a bit too futuristic, but the benefits that it holds are endless. If you are living with someone who is less mobile, a smart home is an excellent way in ensuring day to day tasks are carried out as simply as possible. Remember, your smart home isn’t ostentatious, it helps with increased security, saving money and energy efficiency.