What Is Your Smart Home Control Level?
No Matter Where You Are on the Smart Home Spectrum, It’s Easy to Get Started
Even with all the smart home devices and systems readily available in the market, some folks haven’t jumped in. The reality is that some people are very comfortable with new technology, some love the novelty of doing something differently, and some – often called late adopters – only jump on the bandwagon when the benefits and costs are crystal clear.
There is a whole spectrum of where people are concerning smart technology. The penetration rate of smartphones in the U.S. is currently about 70%, and that is one measure of smart technology as it is the gateway to much of it. But while some may have a smart thermostat like Nest, they may not think they need anything else in that vein. Likewise, another person might have a video doorbell to add security but have little interest in other smart home devices.
Where are you on the smart home control spectrum in your Des Moines IA residence? Let’s explore it in more detail.
Level 1: No Smart Technology (Almost)
Let's say you haven't jumped into smart home devices, outside of using a smartphone. That means you have no smart lights, cameras, thermostats, or even voice control assistants like Amazon Alexa or Google Home.
At this level, you may or may not have automation capabilities for some features. For years, people have had mechanical or electronic timers for outside lights, much the same as sprinkler systems have data and time capabilities. These can provide some degree of automation, but they must be set, cannot be remotely accessed, and don't connect or work with anything else. If you have a pool or spa, they similarly might work on a timed schedule and are equally disconnected from any other control system.
Some people may have a smart device like a Nest thermostat. A surprising number of people buy them for a couple of key reasons: the modern look, and the ability to create scheduled with the companion smartphone app. In many of these cases, they don't use the smart features like geolocation (to determine different settings while home or away) or linking it to other smart home functions.
In the same vein, smart speakers like Amazon Echo are sometimes used for entertainment and information. It's easy to call up music on demand through them, or even use them as a Bluetooth wireless speaker. Some may not use any of the smart home features of Alexa. It's another case of having an intelligent device for specific purposes, but not taking deeper advantage of smart home features.
Level 2: Partial Smart Automation
At this level, the profile can be mixed. Some may dabble with smart devices out of interest, convenience, and for specific reasons. There are a host of intelligent DIY devices for a variety of functions, from smart speakers for whole-house audio to smart thermostats, lights, switches, video doorbells, cameras, and more. Some may have a video doorbell or smart cameras - or both - for smarter security and access them through smartphone apps. They may or may not work together, and may come from different brands and platforms. Amazon, Apple, and Google all have smart home devices and ecosystems, and some consumers use devices across all three.
What might be missing in this approach? Integrated, comprehensive home automation. DIY systems can work, but they take a lot of effort from homeowners to make them work consistently. You may still have to rely on different apps to get devices to achieve their full automation potential, and frequent updates often create glitches in automation. Most people get some convenience from these devices, but rarely do you find the ability to integrate them into a reliable, highly automated smart home.
Level 3: Comprehensive Smart Home Control
At this level, you typically find a professionally installed control system that works through one interface. Moreover, that interface offers several modes of control. The smartphone app is convenient because it's almost always with you and the way to access your smart home remotely. Dedicated touchscreens that can be tabletop or wall-mounted, smart wall keypads, and AV remote controls that do more than control your AV equipment are common at this level.
At Level 3, you also find a smart home tailored to the owner's lifestyle. Here you find not just smart lights and thermostats, but integrated, whole-home control for major functions throughout – lighting, climate, entertainment, motorized shades, and ancillary systems like pools, sprinklers, and custom furniture to disguise entertainment equipment. You will find systems like Savant and Control4 in these homes with major control equipment installed in discreet locations out of sight, and highly customized controls for all areas of the house.
Want to get a jump on smart home automation? To get started, click here, click the chat box below, or call us at (877) 754-9111 to get in touch right away. We look forward to working with you.