Cool tidbits that prepare you for your first Smart Home

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Research...Research... Research 

Don’t shy away from looking into products, reviews, and general information before making any decisions. Finding out which controls work with which application is a vital part of the process. You may not even be sure what you’re trying to control. For example, Amazon, Google, and Apple that are competing in the smart home market, so, Google might not work with Amazon and Apple may not work with either one. Think “which platform is the best for my needs?” and stick with it.


What about voice or app control? Apple has a tool called Homekit, which controls your smart home with an iPhone or iPad. Or if you are into voice control, Amazon has Alexa Echo which controls everything through voice commands. 


Search YouTube or go to your local electronics store like Best Buy to help with your search. 



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You Need A Good Router 

Does your router reach??? Most devices are wireless today, which means you better have good signal for Wi-Fi. From smart kitchen appliances, tv’s, smoke alarms, security and much more, your Wi-Fi is even more stressed than ever before. The more devices talking to each other in the same household, you will need high data rates, a good range, and high-capacity to support multiple simultaneous users. Find a good router to ensure a good smart home connection.   

 


  • You Have to Opt-In to Privacy 

Be careful what you opt-in on. How much does your smart home device know about you?

The more information you share the more they will know about you, so, be aware.  


 • You May Need to Talk to Your Landlord 

Is your landlord a butt plug? Lol. There can be a lot of limitations when it comes to renting vs owning. Some installs may require putting a hole in a wall or placing wires in a wall. If you are a renter, you must check with your Landlord to make sure you can install any smart home devices. It may be prohibited according to your rental contract. Even though smart homes make more sense, everyone has not caught up to the newer technological advances available to them. Either way, it’s always safer to check. 


  • Smart Homes Are Hackable 

With the digital revolution constantly evolving, there are key privacy threats to having a smart home. 


Here are some cool facts:

According to Market Watch, “The number of smart homes in North America is expected to hit 73 million by 2021, making up more than 50% of all households. By the end of 2016, more than 21.8 million smart homes had already been connected, creating new problems and anxieties for homeowners.” This means privacy invasion is more of a threat than any other era in history. Your smart home can be unlocked remotely, cameras can be hacked and refrigerators can be infiltrated to spy on food spending cost. Many of these devices are run through apps and online portals.  


Avoid such a threats by increasing the level of authentication such as two-step authentication. Other methods include thumbprint or an eye scan in your phone. This will make it harder for the bad guys to hack into your devices. Most of all, always keep your security updated, especially on new devices.  




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Up your “Smart Devices” IQ

Turn your dumb devices into smart with smart plugs. Reinvent old devices at home such as a lamp....boom.....a smart plug.


Smart plugs have Wi-Fi built-in, and connect to a control device. There are plenty of other smart attachments to choose from...smart plugs are a good starting point.


  • You’re Gonna Save Money

Looking to save money? There is no better way than going smart. Smart home devices actually help you go green by reducing your carbon footprint and your utility bill. That’s right, it’s a twofer-save money and heal the plant!


  • You can be a boss on a budget.

Smart home devices are not nearly as expensive as they used to be. Now you need little to no money to afford most smart devices. Easily upgrade smart thermostats, smart hubs, smart locks, and security systems yourself to save money.  


  • Don’t be an addict!

First, you purchase a smart plug, then the bulbs, and more smart assistance and more smart gadgets.... Soon you realize you’ve opened up Pandora’s tech box. Every week another smart home device. Don’t be this! Balance your tech gadgets in line with your home life. Don’t get caught up with the newest tech gadget and installing it right away. Set small project timelines realistically for every 1-3 months based on your overall project goal.


So do all the research you can to understand how all these devices work and decide which ones are right for you, your family, and your home.


Are you thinking about building a smart home? I hope the information that we provided is helpful to make your choice easier?   


Please don’t hesitate to share with your friends and family.


Which is your favorite smart home beginners tip to help you build a smart home? Please leave a comment below.    



Kwesi Marbury