The future is now. Where we once dreamed of living in homes that incorporated technology seamlessly into our daily lives, now that picture is very much reality. Having a sassy robot home helper is only just around the corner, but from the invention of the Roomba to the addition of Alexa, smart technology has become slowly embedded into our homes. At the moment, some of these technologies are still in their infancies and not as efficient as you may hope – but the learning curve is steep, and with the constant feedback loop, improvements are rapid and continuous. But what is the best available technology you can bring to your home right now? If you’re set on making your life easier with tech, here are some of the ones to watch:
Geofence Your House
When you think of fencing, a white picket model may be the first to spring to mind, but geofencing, previously used by keen marketers and within specific industries is now spreading to the home. What is the benefit of having a virtual perimeter? Well, with your digital boundaries marked out, you can implement a whole host of automatic actions whenever you enter or exit the property. Set the bath running or turn the oven on when you enter the house, switch on your app for work emails when you leave in the morning, set up auto-alerts via text message when a child or a pet leaves your pre-determined zone or have your heating and lighting come on automatically when you pull into the drive. There are already systems to perform all of the parts – smartphones such as the Samsung Galaxy S7 already include a ‘Smart Lock’ feature that auto-unlocks your phone when you enter your home or workplace.
Be Energy Smart
With all our concerns around energy use – and how we can be kinder to the planet and our wallets but cutting down on our usage – home tech can really come into its own. Smart meters can now monitor how much we’re using in real time, and systems like those from Powerhouse Dynamics can analyse appliances and alert you when they aren’t energy efficient. Anyone buying and selling houses should be aware of the massive amount of value this can add to a home.
Rise of the Machines
Smart appliances are available to buy now but will be an increasingly prevalent option in homes of the near future. From fridges that can alert you when you’re running low on milk – and reorder it automatically – to searching online for recipes to make using the ingredients you have at home, it’s all geared to learn from our preferences and make life ever easier. Platforms are developing all the time to enhance our universal control and let us access and communicate with multiple devices via one control interface on our smartphones. There are definitely upsides to being able to cook a pizza in the oven and queue up a movie to watch, all while sat in the office.
From security to convenience, there’s not many boundaries technology in the home can’t help us with – but only if we’re bold enough to embrace it.