The modern home has so many automated devices in place, some obvious some not. Home automation may seem like something Q would equip James Bond with, or that only the wealthy have. But when you think about it many facets of technology in your home are already automated – heating timers, underfloor heating in some rooms, security alarm, security cameras, perhaps your garage door. These are all elements of home control technology on an individual scale. The real trick is to have that one all-encompassing system that combines all the smaller automation elements in each autonomous system and combines them into a single neat interface for you and your family to live with. The control system can then “listen” to all it’s connected devices and react to alerts either for security reasons, entertainment reasons, or just for convenience!
Security alarms nowadays are much more of a complex beast than before. Many have built in home automation features in addition to the traditional network of PIRs, contact sensors and sounders. Already it is commonplace for an alarm to automatically call out to the police when activated, perhaps send an alert to a call centre or to your mobile. But with a control system in place the alarm (or a panic button press) can be listened for and can go on to activate a series of events. All the lights can turn on. All the windows and doors will close/lock. The cameras all go into record mode and display on the tv screens which have also all turned themselves on. Perhaps the outside lights flash on and off to alert the neighbours to a potential danger. With a control system like this in place you are making sure you and your family are safe. Neighbourhood safety is increased too (assuming you like your neighbours!).
Home automation isn’t all serious and boring. Your home automation system can embrace your multiroom audio and multiroom video system. With the same keypad on the wall that you can flick on the lights, your automation system will also let you turn up the music, turn on the TV. Every morning have the house automatically play your favorite song or radio station as an alarm. When you come home at night and you press your garage door button in the car, the home automation system will pick up your personal flag and put the TV onto your favorite channel, turn on the lights for you, open up the rooflights maybe. Having friends over? With a push of a button on a keypad the ambient lighting will come on over the drinks table, some cool music will play through the speakers, the fire may ignite. Hand around the wireless automation controller or iPad and you can choose music to play with one another.
Your Home Automation system will make your life easier. Most of the time running automation tasks in the background that you aren’t even aware of! With lighting pathways in place come home and press WELCOME on the home automation keypad and the hallway, kitchen and stairwell lights will all activate. In the background the system will make sure you are only using the amount of brightness necessary to illuminate the way, saving bulb life and energy bills. Go to bed and press GOODNIGHT and the home automation system will close the curtains, turn off the lights, shut off the TV, leaving you to have a peaceful sleep knowing you are safe and secure in your automated home.
Combining security and convenience (and potentially even entertainment) with modern iPads and similar devices you can log on to your home automation system on the move! Check your security cameras from work to see that the cleaners are doing their job, or that the kids are safe. Forgot to turn off the heating before going on holiday? Pickup your laptop and load the home software and shut the heat off. Make sure the lights are off too!
Having home automation is an unobtrusive elegant solution. It takes the wall acne of a thermostat, light switch, blinds switch, CCTV screen, door entry phone, music keypad all being on the wall together, and replaces it with an elegant single keypad or touchscreen interface. It doesn’t necessarily need to be whole home automation, perhaps just the key rooms in the house. Or just the ground floor living areas.