How to get started on making your home smarter
Setting up a smart home can seem daunting for the average person who isn't really clued up in the world of home automation. Well, it really is not that complicated if you know where to begin. You don't need to do too much, too soon. You can take your time and do it in stages. In this article, I will give a list of places to start and how much you are likely to pay.
Choose your ecosystem
All smart devices come with their own apps, so it will be easier having one central device to control them from. For the sake of compatibility, it is a good idea that your current devices be the guide in deciding on an ecosystem to use. If you have Android devices, Google Home or Amazon’s Alexa will be more ideal while Apple’s HomeKit will work better for Apple users. These are speakers or displays where you will operate all your smart devices from, using a virtual home assistant. You simply tell the virtual assistant what you need done. While that is more convenient, not having one will not hinder your journey of automating your home. Your smartphone, coupled with a home internet connection will work just fine controlling your smart devices to start you off.
- Google Nest smart speaker price: R1099
- Amazon Echo speaker price: R1499
- Apple HomePod mini price: R3499
Get smart bulbs
The easiest place to get started on smart devices is getting smart bulbs. You buy them and simply connect them. The smart bulbs can be operated by your virtual assistant or simply operate them from your smartphone. You also have an option of getting an electrician to come and install a smart light switch if you do not want the hassle of replacing the smart bulb from time to time.
- Smart bulb price: R179
Get smart plugs
This device is the one I am most excited about. It can basically turn any appliance connected to it smart. You operate the plug itself to switch on or off any of your regular appliances. The appliance just needs to be connected to the smart plug.
- Smart plug price: R249
Last but not least, get a vacuum robot
This little addition to your family will save you time and energy by cleaning up your home. It picks up dirt and debris from your floors or carpet. These will work on their own with very little to no human intervention. You may need to get the little guy unstuck here and there, occasionally.
- Robot vacuum price: R3669
This is barely scratching the surface in making your home smarter. You can beef up your security with products like the ring video doorbell, motion sensor smart cameras or just switch on your smart bulbs to give the illusion of being home when you are not. Or on a lighter note, get smart sprinklers for your garden. And how can we not mention the smart pet feeders for those beloved members of our families? It can take years to turn your home into a smart home. We believe here would be a good start, and then grow from there. If there is more you would like to add to this topic, please share your thoughts on our social media pages or in the comment section below.