Homes are more connected than ever before. In fact, the rapid growth in the smart home tech market has made it tough for laypeople to ascertain value in any given WiFi- or Bluetooth-connected device. How do you know that supposedly efficient smart home tech is actually making your life easier?
Great question. The short answer is, some smart gadgets are clearly designed to make your home more efficient and productive; it’s part of their nature.
Let’s take a look at six types of gadgets that will almost certainly improve your quality of life at home. For even more ideas, browse best-rated gadgets on Faveable, a site that lists and ranks top consumer products.
1. Smart Home Thermostat
Dollar for dollar, a smart home thermostat may just be the best possible investment you can make in your home’s efficiency. Depending on who you ask and where you live, a learning thermostat could reduce your heating and cooling bills by anywhere from 10% to 20%. Before you buy, review what to look for in a smart thermostat and make sure you’re choosing a product that’s compatible with your home’s wiring.
2. WiFi Coffeemaker
Never scoop coffee in a fog again! The trusty WiFi coffee maker is a major morning time-saver (and pretty fun to use besides). Choose a basic model that makes your standard pot of drip coffee, or a fancier option with plenty of bells and whistles. Whatever gets you the perfect cup.
3. Smart Lights
Smart LED lights aren’t just energy-saving wonders. They’re also clutch home security accessories — the better to warn off potential intruders and sync with your carbon monoxide detector, for instance. If you’re a frequent host, don’t sleep on the more fun aspects of smart lighting, like multicolored displays and strobes.
4. Smart Locks
Ditch those annoying metal keys for good when you upgrade to a smart lock system that uses a keypad or biometric markers (or both) to keep your home secure. A smart lock system may be just what you need to move past your home’s legacy home security system, too.
5. Smart Home Security System
If smart locks aren’t enough, consider a more comprehensive smart home security system that you can control from your phone.
This isn’t the old-school race-to-enter-the-code-before-the-police-come type of security system; it’s responsive, resilient, and far less prone to false alarms. And, depending on your vendor, it’s likely to be completely customizable, with just the right number of motion detectors and cameras for your coverage area.
6. WiFi Irrigation
According to the EPA, landscape irrigation accounts for about one-third of all U.S. residential water use. That’s roughly 9 billion gallons per day. Much of that volume is lost to evaporation or imprecise sprays — a serious issue in drought-prone areas, not to mention an added expense for homeowners. A smart irrigation system could dramatically reduce your home’s outdoor water use, slimming your bills and mitigating your environmental impact.
Is Your Home As Efficient As It Should Be?
The world of smart home technology is wide and getting wider. It’s all most homeowners can do to keep pace. But the writing is on the wall: the average home of the future will make today’s top-of-the-line connected homes seem quaint by comparison.
Whether your home is at the forefront of this exciting press for change is up to you. In the end, it’s down to your willingness to experiment with new smart home technologies and your willingness to fully embrace their game-changing potential.