The modern smart home is still learning. In the tech world’s rush to make everything internet-connected, the home seems to be the area with the most potential for change and lasting effect. There are certainly no shortage of startups and corporations trying to make it work.
For now, only a handful of these experiments look like they’ll bring more convenience than frustration. It is hard to say that any smart home gadget is smart enough to be essential, but if you have an appreciation for forward- looking tech and a wallet will money to burn, there are devices out there that can help your day-to-day. Give them a chance, and it might be hard to go back. Here are a few that we like.
ecobee3 Smart WiFi and Nest Learning Thermostat
The Nest Learning Thermostat is the face of smart home technology for most, but depending on what your home is like, it is not blasphemous to say the ecobee3 is superior.
Now, at their cores, both devices carry most of the same benefits to making your home an energy efficient house. They are both capable of learning your preferences and schedule, then adjusting the temperature accordingly. They are both better-looking and more enjoyable to use than the basic pieces of plastic that occupy most households. Their very presence will probably make you more conscious about saving energy. They both can pay for themselves over time and once you’re able to heat up or cool down your house from your phone, without having to get out of bed, you won’t want to go back.
If you live in larger household, however, the ecobee3 can be much more convenient ,if you pick up a couple of remote sensors. Yes, it gets pretty pricey at that point, but having those gives you granular control over the temperature in different rooms around your house. By contrast, the Nest’s measurements are largely limited to the area in which it is installed.
If you live in a condo or smaller place in general, that is no big deal; the Nest itself is still very adept at taking the work of climate control off your hands. We also like the the ecobee3’s display, which isn’t as vibrant as the Nest’s, but is touched- enabled and more spacious, making it less frustrating when you want to enter a WiFi password, see weather info, access the setting, and so on.
Still, both devices are pretty great. Which one is best just depends on whether you need a whole-home solution or a more straightforward one.
Philips Hue and Cree Connected LED Bulb
The Philips Hue is just about synonymous with the “smart lighting” concept, but that is because it works, and it is fun. While nobody really needs a smartphone app that turns their lights blue, the Hue family of devices makes it easy to adjust the mood of a room.
It doesn’t come cheap, though. If you are curious about the idea of adjustable lighting but don’t want to drop a couple hundred on a started kit, the Cree Connected LED Bulb might be a better fit. It requires a hub to work and isn’t as colorful ,but it can be dimmed from a phone, potentially saving you cash along the way.
Like the Learning Thermostat above, the Nest Protect spruces and smartens up a device most of us take for granted. The connected smoke and carbon monoxide detector looks nicer than the gray plastic chuck on your ceiling, for one, but it also does its job well, gauging potential dangers, then loudly alerting you if there is a problem.
If you’re not home when something goes awry, it will send alerts to your phone. A handy “Pathlight” feature gives you a light if the Protect senses you walking around in the dark, too. If you ever get a little too sloppy cooking dinner, you can turn off any non-emergency alarms right from the Nest app, rather than disconnecting the whole thing out of frustration.
We see these modern smart homes on TV and never imagine that we can turn our home into a smart home. Energy efficient houses and smart homes are becoming more and more common and soon they will be a standard. Making these simple updates to your home can thrust it into the future of new age technology. Talk to an S&D Real Estate Agent today to find a modern smart home in Central Florida that matches all of needs and more!