How To Use Technology To Make Your Home A “Smart House”

Smart home gadgets and devices can make your life easier, more fun and more productive. They connect to your Wi-Fi network and allow you to control your lights, thermostat, locks, appliances and more from your smartphone, tablet or computer.

Smart homes are now a reality for many people. Thanks to the Internet of Things (IoT), connected devices are becoming increasingly affordable and easy to integrate into our daily lives.

Echo Dot

The Echo Dot is the first device in a new category of Alexa enabled products called “Skills.” Skills are relatively simple applications that enable users to get more out of their Alexa enabled device. The category is growing at a rapid pace. Right now there are more than 4,000 skills available. In time, these numbers will surely multiply. Skills can do many things like controlling your home theater system with your voice, playing your favorite music, telling you the headlines of the day, providing information on the stock market, giving you the latest sports scores, and so much more.

This is an inexpensive little device with a long list of useful skills. You can also control it with your voice. Just say “Alexa”, then ask her to do something. For example, you could say “Play some music in the bedroom” or “Turn up the heat in the living room”. You could even ask her to change the channel on your TV.

Smart Light bulb

Smart home products are becoming the rage. People want to control everything from the thermostat to the light bulbs in their homes. So anyway, Philips has created this smart hub which connects all the smart devices in your home and controls them from one location. The hub retails for $70 and it comes with a few “starter” bulbs and a remote. You can add more bulbs and other smart stuff at any time. It comes with a two-year warranty.

Google Nest Learning Thermostat

This is the first Google Home product I can think of that has real value. It is a super high-tech home thermostat. It learns your habits and schedules your temperature preferences. It has a built-in camera and microphone that lets you talk to it like you would to your kid. It can also be controlled from anywhere in the world using your voice. It is so sophisticated, it can even tell the difference between you saying, “Set the temperature to 74 degrees” and “I want to set the temperature to 74 degrees.

Google Nest Protect

This little home appliance has been getting rave reviews. It has an amazing ability to sense smoke or carbon monoxide in the home and alert you by sending an immediate text message to your phone. In fact, it is so effective that Google has integrated it into their “Nest” product line. As part of that family, it works with other Google products such as the Nest Cam (web cam), Nest Thermostat, etc.

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