How can we write about everything we love about IoT? We can’t.
Choose 3 and stick with those because I think the the greatest thing about the IoT is that we can combine so many different sensors and kit into one seamless experience that allows anything and everything to be controlled in any way anyone sees fit.
But that’s cheating, so the 3 things in IoT that I love the best?
Z-wave – Z-wave like WiFi is a wireless connection technology but it was created specifically for the Internet of Things. Lightning fast, using very little power, the signal strengthens with each device added making it awesomely expandable and is very secure. Devices include:
- Light switches
- Light bulbs and strips
- Plug sockets
- Sensors: Motion, Light, Temperature
- Alarms: Fire, CO2, Security
Voice control – When it works (and we ensure this) it is seamless and easy to use. You can lie in bed and turn off the house, turn on an alarm and watch some TV without fumbling for your remote, your phone or a switch. On a bigger scale, the fact that Amazon, Apple, Google and Microsoft amongst others are spending billions improving their assistant means that they spur each other to better and better solutions. Meaning we, the consumer will see significant jumps in usability and function within a very small space of time.
The Harmony remote – Not everybody is bothered about a universal remote, some are happy with using multiple remotes and for the price of a Logitech Harmony (£200) I can understand why. However this remote can control over 270,000 devices! Sure you don’t have close to that but thinking outside the box this opens up the ability to integrate all those devices into your Nifty home automation system.
But these top 3 and any one else’s count for nothing, unless they answer the question I learned the hard way when I set up my first business. Technology must answer the client’s problem not be its own thing.
Any final words of advice?
Think of home automation like building a house, you need solid foundations before you do anything, luckily the more z wave items you install the more powerful your network can be. So start simple, radiator valves, plug sockets, light switches and go from there. They will give you lots of control and a solid network that expands as you add more capability.
Each of these is a simple concern, easily remedied by a visit or a call but if I can’t make it, how do I ensure that all is ok? Technology can help with each of these but often at the cost of requiring you to have umpteen apps, expensive subscriptions and forcing your parents to learn complex new technology or skills.