The Gadget List For Creating Your Own Smarthome
Just barely twenty five years ago, technology that we take for granted today such as the internet, wireless communication and mobile computing seemed so far-fetched and inconceivable within our lifetime. One area of technology that was in the realm of science fiction just years ago and is now not only science fact but within reach of everyone is the smart home. Not only is smart home technology affordable but many smart home gadgets are so easy to install and set up, you can even do it on your own.
We have compiled a list of the best smart home gadgets that are currently available today. We may not have robot maids and butlers but we do have gadgets and devices that entertain us, keeps us safe, make life easier and even save us money.
We start off with one of the simplest but yet pretty amazing smart home device, the smart light switch. To install, just remove the existing dumb switch and replace with the WeMo Light Switch. Then install the free app on your Android or iOS device and you’re done. You can create a schedule for the light to turn on and off and you can monitor or control the light from anywhere.
Ever had that nagging feeling that you forgot to switch off the light when you are on vacation? Now you can check and make sure. The WeMo light switch works with any electrical appliance, not just lights. (Read more)
Now that we have gotten the lights and electrical appliances taken care of, we move on to the home entertainment system. The ARIES wireless HDMI transmitter & receiver allows you to send high definition video and surround sound from any source such as your digital cable box, Blu-Ray player, videogame console or your laptop, and send it wirelessly to any HDMI capable display such as a flat screen TV or a computer monitor.
All you need to do is to plug the transmitter to the HDMI output on the player and then attach the receiver to the display’s HDMI port. No messy and expensive wiring required. (Read more)
Next, even your plants can get some loving from your smart home. The Parrot Flower Power Smart Plant Sensor is a smart sensor that you plant close to the plant you are monitoring. It has sensors that precisely measure in real time if the conditions are right for your plant to flourish such as soil moisture, fertilizer, ambient temperature, and light intensity.
The sensor sends alerts via an app on your smartphone when conditions are not ideal. It lets you know when the plant needs to be watered or moved to get better sunlight. It is like having your own private botanist. (Read more)
You too need some monitoring to make sure you stay in shape and remain in the best of health. The Fitbit Aria is a smart scale that measures your weight, body fat percentage and calculates your body mass index (BMI) to keep track of your health trend.
Data captured by the Fitbit Aria is uploaded to the Fitbit website for tracking and analysis. You can monitor and set goals for yourself via the website or through the free Fitbit app on your smartphone or tablet. Any goals achieved can be shared via social media. (Read more)
If Apple were to produce a thermostat, it would look very much like the Nest Learning Thermostat. It has a clean, stylish design and it completely turned around how we use a programmable thermostat. What makes the Nest the best programmable thermostat is that you don’t have to program it. Just adjust the temperature on the Nest and it learns your preference and it creates a schedule based on your everyday usage.
The Nest connects to the internet via WiFi letting you monitor and control it from afar. It has a sensor that detects that nobody is around and it will turn off heating to save energy. The Nest will drastically reduce your heating bill. (Read more)
Air pollution is a huge problem for urban dwellers. We install air filters and purifiers but how do we know if they are working as advertised? The Netatmo Urban Weather Station is a smart monitor that measures everything from air quality to temperature, humidity, pressure and even noise pollution.
The data collected by the Netatmo Urban Weather Station is uploaded wirelessly and can be monitored from a smartphone via an included app. You get real-time notifications and also records of historical graphs. It also downloads the Air Index Quality from the internet so you can know when are the best times to go outdoors. The device has both indoor and outdoor sensors. (Read more)
Like the Nest Thermostat, the Nest Protect takes a whole new spin on the design and operation of a smoke alarm. The Nest Protect is connected wirelessly via WiFi and can send smoke alarm and low battery alerts to your smartphone.
If you have more than one unit installed, a spoken alert from all units will inform you the problem and the room which room it is located in. Before a full blast alarm is triggered, you will receive an pre-alert giving you enough time to take care of minor misdemeanors like a burnt toast for example. Switching off the alarm requires just a simple wave of the hand. No more swinging a broom at the smoke alarm. (Read more)
To tie up your smart home gadgets together under one system, there is the Revolv Smart Home. It is a smart central hub that works with smart home gadgets from other manufacturers and it works with 7 different protocols and with more being added.
The Revolv Smart Home communicates wirelessly so no complicated wiring is required. Control and monitoring is via an easy to use app that runs on iOS devices. It even takes advantage of your iPhone’s hardware features. For example, it can make use of the iPhone geolocation service to know when you are away from home and switch off lights and appliances accordingly. (Read more)
The SmartThings Know and Control Your Home Kit is similar to the Revolv Smart Home but it works with both iOS and Android devices. The SmartThings system also has its own range of smart home gadgets that allows you to monitor and control lights, thermostats, appliances and doors. It also works with other smart home gadgets from other manufacturers.
With the included sensors in the kit you can monitor people entering and leaving your home or a room, control lighting and heating and much more. More sensors can be purchased separately as and when needed. (Read more)
NFC tags are not actual smart devices but when paired with a smart home system, it can do some pretty amazing things. NFC tags can be used to launch apps on a NFC supported smartphone. Since most smart home gadgets are controlled and monitored using smartphones, the NFC tags can be programmed for quick access to the apps or make quick adjustments on the gadget.
For example, you can program an NFC tag to launch the light control app and turn on the bathroom lights with just a tap. So if you need to use the bathroom in the middle of the night, just tap your phone on the programmed NFC tag to turn it on. (Read more)