Like other aspects of our daily lives, technology has been incorporated into the home at an accelerated pace in recent years. A new way to enjoy and take care of home has come through smart homes.
In the following text we will explain what a smart house is and how it works. In addition to its advantages to improve the security, sustainability and savings of our homes.
Smart house, what is it
The term intelligent house includes all those automated systems capable of controlling, in a more comfortable and efficient way, functionalities such as the temperature of the house, multimedia services or anti-theft systems, among many other aspects.
To achieve this, the smarthome uses home automation technology. That is to say, systems programmed to be controlled automatically and remotely and with incidence in all the spaces of the home. This includes the operation of household appliances, air conditioning systems, safety control and other devices connected to the network.
Smart homes and their functions
In their beginnings, intelligent houses had as their main focus the energy and climate control of the home. Or what is the same, the possibility of programming what temperature is the most appropriate at each moment, according to the climate outside, the time of day, the number of people in the home or simply our preferences.
This functionality has been perfected over the years. If this used to be controlled through remotes or screens installed at home, it is now possible to do so through mobile devices that centralize all the services of the smart home.
Another pioneering role in this technology was in the area of security. Home alarms or external access can be remotely controlled for years, knowing at all times if there is a threat or danger in the home environment. A very useful feature for example when you are on vacation.
In fact, the latest security systems even allow you to activate some elements of the house (blinds, lights, music system…) while you are out, thus appearing to move around the house and preventing possible robberies, so common in holiday periods.
Within the remote control of household appliances, home automation -or the set of techniques to automate a home- has advanced in recent years by making everyday tasks easier for the inhabitants of the home.
For example, by means of intelligent refrigerators that control in detail the foods we have stored, their expiration and nutritional information or the need to buy others. Something similar can be achieved with other furniture where we store everyday products, such as cleaning or bath products.
How home automation works
Home automation technology allows communication between the user or owner of the house and the system of connected objects in the home. To do so, it collects and processes all kinds of information from these objects. And through the control centre (or domotic centre) it issues orders for the execution of certain actions: from the opening of windows to the activation of the burglar alarm.
So how does it work? Today’s home automation cannot be understood without wireless connection systems (wi-fi networks) that allow intercommunication between objects and the sending of information in real time to the devices that function as a control center, be it a smartphone, a computer or an intelligent clock.
Another crucial element for smart homes to function properly are the sensors incorporated in the home devices that allow communication with the home automation system.
Examples of use of a smarthouse
In addition to the features mentioned above, we show here some other examples of the use of the latest technology in home automation:
- Digital access controls. The installation of intelligent electronic locks allows you to know even when you are far away from home if the main door of the house is properly closed or even to open it remotely. Something very useful if we want a friend or neighbor to come in punctually while we are away.
- Customized video and audio system. If you connect your entertainment platforms to the home automation system, you will be able to program the type of music, for example, according to the place in the house where you are, or activate video systems with your voice, among other functions.
- Protocols for risk situations. Keeping home security systems interconnected makes it possible, for example, to automatically detect unwanted situations such as a gas leak or a flood. Once the alert is given, smart homes are already able to contact, if necessary, the emergency services.
- Alerts to falls or accidents of older people. If a person with reduced mobility or an elderly dependent lives in our home, home automation allows us to detect situations of falls or accidents inside the home, automatically alerting another occupant of the home -whether or not they are physically there- or an ambulance.
Connected and ecological houses
Another key aspect of the smarthome is its ability to improve energy efficiency. And therefore the savings that this represents both from an economic and environmental point of view.
As we mentioned before, home automation allows to regulate the lighting systems and the thermostat of the home adapting them to the real needs of its inhabitants. In this way we avoid unnecessary waste of electricity and energy.
Another novelty already present in the market is the accumulation of resources from clean energies (solar, wind, etc.) for later use. A model that allows this energy to be used later, when demand increases because temperatures have dropped or there are more people in the home.
A smart and secure home
Domotic technology allows to reduce the risk of an undesired event in the property. For this reason, a smarthome is a saving even in home insurance.
Smart homes are profitable in the long term from the point of view of comfort, savings and security. Although they involve a high initial investment.
Traditionally, a smart house has been associated with using domotics inside it, but this does not mean that this house is a smart house: providing it with “Smart” features goes much further and allows you to create sensations in your home and make it smart, as opposed to a classic domotics system that is simply used to regulate and control different systems and installations in your home.