Home automation certainly has its appeal. Even if you are not technologically minded, the thought of automating parts of your home can be intriguing. It is enough to get you thinking about what home automation is really like. The good news is that there are plenty of smart devices that are perfect for getting started.
It is important to note that some in the industry draw a distinction between home automation and home security. Others do not. For the purposes of introducing yourself to home automation, it isnot a big deal. You choose one or two devices as your entry point and then go from there.
Vivint Smart Home, a nationwide leader in home security and smart home technology, says that many people choose the smart thermostat as their first device. But there are other options. Below are three easy-to-use devices that might prove better than the smart thermostat.
1. Smart Speaker
Smart speakers may very well be the most popular home automation device for newbies. Tens of millions of households around the globe are already equipped with one. Amazon is the clear industry leader, having sold nearly sixteen million units just in the fourth quarter of 2019. Their closest rival is Google.
Between the two of them, Amazon and Google command most of the smart speaker market. Whether that is good or bad is a matter of opinion. One of the upsides is that other device manufacturers make a point of designing their products to be compatible with Amazon and Google products. That’s good for consumers in the sense that smart speakers can now act as home automation hubs.
If you are not familiar with the smart speaker concept, it is pretty easy to understand. A smart speaker is a small device that sits on a counter or table. You issue voice commands to control it. When integrated with a home automation system, you can speak to your smart speaker to control lighting, your thermostat, and a variety of other devices.
2. Video Doorbell
The next device on our list is the video doorbell. This handy little device combines the traditional doorbell with a small video camera and on-board audio. It is paired with a mobile app that gives you access through your smartphone. The video component allows you to see anyone standing at the front door just by running the app. On-board audio allows you to communicate with that person in real time.
Installing a video doorbell is extremely easy. The device is wireless, so you do not have to worry about making an electrical connection. Just attach it to the wall and you are done. It only takes a few minutes to set up the device with your wi-fi network.
3. Smart Lock
Last on the list is the smart lock. A smart lock is an electronic lock that can be accessed in multiple ways. First is the digital keypad. Input a security code via the keypad and you’re in. Next up is your smartphone. Using an on-board app, you can lock and unlock your door with a swipe of your finger. Better yet, you can do it from hundreds of miles away.
The third access method is the standard key. Although you might never use a key again, manufactures still include this option just in case a lock’s batteries die. You cannot be locked out of your house for lack of battery power.
These three easy-to-use devices make very good first devices for the home automation newbie. If you have been thinking about getting into home automation yourself, you now have a starting point. Enjoy.