What exactly is a smart home and what makes it worthwhile? From helping you boost home security to providing ways to save money on your electric bill, a smart home has a lot of benefits. Read on to figure out if a smart home is for you and how you can get started.
A smart home lets you automate all sorts of household electronics that were previously controlled by hand. That may mean using your phone to turn lights off or logging onto a tablet to enable your security system. A single smart device could control just one thing in your home or a whole interconnected network through use of voice commands.
It depends. Smart home devices each operate a little differently; some just plug into an outlet while others need more planning to connect. Just know that the more complex the setup and the more connections you want, the greater the chance you may need professional help.
Many of these stand-alone devices may be an easy install for you if you have a little DIY experience.
Many of these smart devices quickly connect to other things you might already own, such as smart TVs.
Definitely. These devices can help you save money in the long run, especially if you occasionally forget to switch off the lights or shut the garage door.
For that, you’ll need what’s called a smart home central hub. Think of it like the brains of a smart home. It’s a gadget that unifies all your connected devices and controls them all from one app. For example, the Google Home Hub lets you create scenes — a 6 a.m. one, for example, that automatically opens blinds, turns on kitchen lights and plans out the morning commute.
Some smart home hubs can work with devices no matter the original manufacturer. Before you purchase a smart home devices hub, make sure that's the case and check that it's compatible with your smartphone.
A smart hub has to be hardwired to a router or connected to it via Wi-Fi, then paired with your devices. To operate a hub, reliable internet is a must; consider the unmatched speeds of Fios Internet to help (available in select areas).
How do I get started with a smart home?
First, figure out exactly what you want to automate, even if it’s just helping your coffeemaker get that first cup ready in the morning. With a little planning, you can automate even more in your home and improve the convenience, safety and affordability of your everyday life.