Smart Home Technologies

Smart home technology has become a mainstream option for everyone, not only the wealthy and tech-savvy. The tech industry has responded by creating ever-more sophisticated solutions. While a lot of people associate this automation with devices like Google’s Nest or Amazon’s Echo or Apple’s HomeKit, the term is more comprehensive than that and encompasses an array of options for your home. They range from remote-controlled lighting and heating to CCTV doorbells, home security systems and smart locks. Some allow you to monitor elderly relatives, pets, and children and even track your children.

Integration is the primary ingredient of an effective smart home system. This is why the most effective products are those that work with other systems and devices to make your home smarter. For instance smart lighting can communicate with the central hub to set your lights to a certain time or switch them off when you leave your home. A video doorbell could notify you of visitors who aren’t expected and alarm systems can call the police or fire departments. Once you’ve got the hang of IFTTT (If This Then That) You can make use of services like Stringify to automate your devices in more complex ways.

Of course, bringing new smart devices to the home brings with it its own set of issues. CNET works hard to understand company policies, address privacy concerns and ask questions directly to companies.

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