The smart home era has arrived. Smart homes are no longer the domain of fanciful inventors making predictions destined to remain unfulfilled for decades. Just look around. Today’s homes are smarter than ever thanks to intelligent technologies that help us better manage everything from energy consumption to personal security.
For certain, smart homes are still new enough that plenty of people remain skeptical. Some are downright suspicious. It is going to take time and more technological development before smart homes are the norm. Society has to better understand the smart home paradigm and all it implies before wide-scale adoption can happen.
Knowing that, there is the question of how smart a home should be. Can a home be too smart? The safe answer is that it is up to personal preference. Some technologies that seem fine to one homeowner would be terrifying to another. Other technologies will seem too complicated or utterly useless. There is no way to know until the smart home concept reaches maturity.
Smart Home Automation
The smart home concept really revolves around automation. For example, what makes a smart thermostat smart? The fact that you can program it once and forget about it. As time marches on, your thermostat ‘learns’ your lifestyle and adjusts itself appropriately. You end up with a system that is fully automated. You only have to make adjustments if you want to manually override programming for a particular reason.
Automation is not a big problem for many people. In fact, more automation is better. Being able to program everything from thermostats to lighting means having less to worry about as you go through your day-to-day routine. And yes, it is pretty cool to walk into the house and turn on the lights simply by speaking.
Connectivity is where some people draw the line here. They understand that having a truly smart home with tons of cool features requires connecting to the internet. They know that external cloud environments are where home automation software is housed. That makes them nervous. They would rather eschew some aspects of home automation in order to avoid having their homes continually online.
Smart Home Security
You can hardly talk about smart home technology these days without bringing security into the mix. A Vivint Smart Home post discussing how to make your home smart says it all. Before getting into home automation and all it brings to the table, the post jumps into security.
This is not a bad thing in light of the fact that home security actually opened the door to the smart home concept. Nonetheless, is it appropriate to link home security with smart technology? A lot of people think it is. They see the benefits of doing so and integration suddenly becomes a no-brainer.
The same technology that allows a homeowner to remotely control his smart thermostat also gives him access to his video surveillance cameras. It gives him access to lighting and smart door locks as well.
That might be too smart for your liking. In particular, you might be concerned about placing video surveillance cameras in key locations around your house. The last thing you want is for hackers to gain access to your cameras. Know that your concerns are legitimate.
What we already know about smart home technology leads us to conclude that freedom of choice is the best way to go. There are plenty of devices to be had. Each homeowner gets to decide for himself what the best home automation and security system looks like. He gets to decide just how smart he wants his house to be.