About to Buy a Smart Home or Install Smart Technology in Your Current Home?
- Written by Remar Sutton
- Category: Articles
Smart Home Technology: Things to Consider Before Buying
Smart homes technologies are becoming increasingly popular among consumers. In a smart home you can easily and conveniently monitor, track, and control various appliances, devices, and gadgets by using an app on your phone or computer. Through these apps you have the ability to control almost anything.
Whether you are considering installing a few devices or upgrading your entire home, you should consider the following pros and cons.
Here are a few examples:
- Door lock
- Video door bell
- Home security system
- Security cameras
- Smart speakers
Before you invest in smart technology there are a few things that you should consider. We’ve created a quick pros and cons list to help you understand the benefits and potential risks to investing in these technologies.
Smart home technology can allow you to streamline common tasks. It can also allow you to remotely control various systems including heating/cooling and lighting.
Tailoring heating and cooling to your usage can result in lower utility bills. Some smart appliances can adjust their energy usage to avoid peak energy demand times.
Cameras, motion sensors, and other advanced features in home security systems can be monitored remotely.
Through voice commands can control lights, lock exterior doors, and operate a phone or computer.
A smart home may have the potential to sell for more than a comparable home that doesn’t have smart technology.
A smart home may sound like a good thing but there may be some drawbacks. Here are some things to take into consideration.
Smart home products cost more than conventional products. Consider before purchasing if the long term savings will be worth the cost.
Anything that is connected to the internet can be hacked. It’s important to identify what safety and security features are provided and what additional ones may be necessary to keep you the safest.
There are many smart home products and manufacturers. Unless all of your devices are from the same manufacturer, communication between your devices and control of your devices may require multiple control systems.
Some systems have a backup if there is no internet connection, but some do not which could limit the controls you have.
When the power goes out, it may impact certain controls that you have. Consider these questions: What happens when the power goes out? What can or can't you do? Can you still lock or unlock your doors? Once the power comes back on do you have to setup up the device again?
Phone (or control device) issues
If you forgot or lost your phone, would you still be able to control the systems you normally control with the app? For example, could you get into your home or control your heating/cooling without your phone? What else would be impacted by this?
The setup of some devices can be time consuming and learning how to properly use some devices can be difficult.
Protect Your Devices
Connecting devices to the internet can be very risky unless you take the appropriate security precautions. By securing every device, you lower the risk of anybody hacking into your system. Consider taking these steps:
Enable the strongest security protections provided for each device.
If provided, turn on encryption.
Use strong passwords. If stronger access protection is available, use it.
Limit access to your network. Setup a network user account that has access only to the internet for use by guests.
Use strong protection on the devices that control your smart home.
Voice control can be a weak point as authentication and other security isn't as robust. So limit its use.
Install updates when available. Those updates may provide fixes for security and operational issues.
To get the most our of your smart home be sure to do your research. Knowing the pros and cons about the technology you plan to invest I will help make sure you get the right products.