Smart Homes sometimes seem like a glimpse into a future we imagined as children. But like every technological advance there are pitfalls for the unwary. What are the pros and cons of smart homes today?
The pros are many, here is a selection..
The Pros of Smart Homes
Quality of Life
Quality of life is a key driver for smart technology. We’re all much busier than we used to be yet the time consuming drudgery of housework, cooking and laundry refuses to go away! Who can forget the first ads for the Roomba – a vacuum cleaner that roams the property at night vacuuming up the debris while you sleep. Genius!
Security is probably the number one worry faced by householders in the UK. Burglary is shocking, invasive and occasionally dangerous. It leaves its mark long after the physical damage has been repaired.
As a Security Company, the link between smart home technology and security is well established. You can use smart locks to lock your doors and windows even from remote locations. Cameras will show you who’s at the door even if you’re not at home, giving you the option to call the police if you need to!
With the price of energy going through the roof, smart technology might be the best investment you ever make. Solar panels can charge batteries enabling you to bypass the national grid, room level heating is becoming more sophisticated and hot water boilers more efficient.
The convenience of being able to turn devices and systems on and off from a single remote control is fantastic. A major step forward from the drawer full of remotes that we have become used to!
Ideal for the Elderly and Disabled
See above. For those of us with elderly parents, smart technology is a real enabler. It allows the elderly to remain in control of their lives for longer and to remain in touch with their loved ones more. frequently. In terms of raising the quality of life, smart technolgy for the elderly and disabled is a fantasticly effective way of combatting loneliness as well as making cooking less hazardous and entertainment more accessible.
One click technologies save time and pre-programmed intelligent technologies save more. Lighting that is turned on when you enter the room and off when you leave. Blinds that open in the morning and close at sundown. Leaving you free to get on with the important things in life!
With security built in, some household insurance is cheaper.
Patcchy at the moment in the UK, but there are subsidies available. Its inevitable, given the spiralling cost of energy that government will encourage homeowners to opt for energy saving technology. The most obvious one being solar power. This in turn can become the cornerstone of a smart home upgrade.
The Cons of Smart Homes
It is not cheap to go Smart, but it may be cheaper than you think. Smart Home controllers start at around £500 and if you already have the smart TV and the entertainment system then that’s a good place to start a smart home project.
Dependent on Reliable Internet
In China, 4G is available on the Great Wall. In the UK regrettably fast internet is still a dream for many people especially in rural areas. Some of the greater benefits of Smart Technology such as remote control absolutely depend on reliable internet provision.
When we speak to people about Smart Home technology the questions we get asked more than any others are to do with techno fear.
Can a Hacker Take over my Home?
Absolutely not. The technology we recommend, Control4 uses sophisticated privacy protocols to protect your smart network. Effectively a network within a network only you will be able to access it.
I’ve seen 2001 – Hal was a smart controller and he locked the astronaut out of the spaceship!
That was twenty years ago! Smart technology in 2022 is designed to help not hinder, so you won’t get locked out of your home.
What if my Smart Fridge goes on a spending spree?
There are smart kitchen technologies these days that will put together a shopping list and submit it to Waitrose or your vendor of choice, but you always get to validate the list before it is sent and you are in charge of the alternatives – it won’t swap Cava for Champagne and Cod roe for Caviar without your explicit intervention!
Every new technology has a learning curve. Smart Home control systems are installed by thoroughly trained experts and after that, the learning curve is surprisingly shallow. We got used to mobile phones pretty easily, smart homes are really no more complicated.
Gadgets of any kind are susceptible to being overtaken by better alternatives. That’s a side effect of competition and technology. It’s possible to mitigate the risks by checking out the market thoroughly and making decisions based on information.
The major components of a smart home project such as solar energy probably need some expert advice as well as a lot of research as they are so expensive that you can’t afford any missteps.
Smaller investments are not so vital – after all, how many times have you changed your TV simply because another one was released?
Smart Homes by Security Wise
We are partners with Control4, the industry’s most comprehensive smart home controller. We can advise on most of the aspects of your smart home project and we have a fully functional smart home showroom in Shrewsbury that you are very welcome to come and view. We have expert staff on hand to answer your questions and offer advice.
If you’d like to have a chat about how Smart Technology can work for you, fill in the form and we’ll get in touch!