Smart home automation is a popular topic with more and more people turning to home automation everyday.
In fact, you can now find smart home devices in two thirds of Australian households.
Making the move to smart home automation systems in Australia might seem like a no-brainer but figuring out what you need and how to get everything up and running is a bit of a challenge. Even if you consider yourself “tech-savvy,” there’s a lot to understand.
What are Smart Home Automation Systems?
What exactly is a smart home system and what does it do?
It’s a way of automating and controlling things throughout your house to do what you want without having to actually, physically, perform that action.
You’ll communicate with objects in your house through apps or voice commands and the devices will perform the action you want.
In some cases, these actions happen simply because the smart home device learned your habits.
For example, you might come home from work everyday at 5:30pm and you turn the lights on when you walk through the door.
Your smart home device may eventually learn that you get home at 5:30 everyday and start turning the lights on for you when you walk through the front door.
These actions can apply to a number of things from home security systems to appliances and more.
We can break home automation systems into three primary categories.
Think of monitoring as your ability to keep tabs on what is going on at your house when you’re not there. This can apply from a security standpoint but also a safety and sustainability standpoint.
Home automation can help you make sure you closed the garage door when you left, you can check to see if you left any lights on, and you can phone in to tell your kids to take out the garbage.
From a security standpoint, this is a great way to keep an eye on your house.
The control aspect takes your smart home system to the next level. Now, you can not only know that you left the garage door open but you can actually close it from your phone. If you forgot to turn the heat down before you left, you could turn down the smart thermostat from work using your smartphone.
Smart home devices allow you to control them from anywhere.
Automation is the final step and it’s the icing on the cake. If your smart home system is at the automation level it means that all the actions we’ve discussed happen automatically without human intervention.
So, when you pull the car out of the garage, it closes automatically. When you leave the house at a certain time, the heat automatically turns down. If no one is home, all the lights shut off on their own.
This is the ultimate goal of smart home automation systems in Australia but it’s difficult for the artificial intelligence to learn your habits this well.
Components of a Smart Home System
Now that you understand what smart home automation systems do, what do you need to create these actions in your home?
Smart Home Ecosystem
It all starts with an ecosystem which is essentially what devices you plan to use for smart home control. Alexa, Google Assistant, Siri, and Philips are some of the most popular options.
The reason why you need to think about this is because it will impact the devices you’re able to purchase because everything needs to be part of the same ecosystem to sync together and learn your habits.
Hubs and Gateways
Once you’ve decided on an ecosystem, you need a hub. Your hub will serve as the primary control for everything in the smart home. For most people, the hub is a smartphone or smart home device like an Alexa, Google Nest Hub, or Siri HomePod.
These devices will act as the brains for everything in your house. It will connect to your wifi and provide a user interface that allows you to manage the devices in your home and set up automation rules.
Now you need the smart devices that are actually going to perform the actions you want. These are called “end devices.” Some examples are:
- Smart plugs that can turn on and off according to your hub
- Light bulbs
- Door locks
- Small appliances
As long as these end devices can connect to your wifi and are in the same ecosystem as your hub, you’ll be able to sync them with your smart home environment and create automation systems that allow you to control everything in your home remotely.
Benefits of Home Automation in Australia
While this might all seem a little unnecessary, there are some practical benefits other than being able to spy on your house when no one is home.
The ultimate question is, “why invest in home automation in Australia”? Do I really need these things? What benefits will they bring to my life?
Let’s cover some of the major benefits you can experience through the use of smart home automation.
There are a number of financial benefits to smart home automation. Not only will you save money each year on energy costs but many energy companies offer rebates and rewards for converting to smart thermostats.
Endeavour Energy will actually send you a smart thermostat if you sign up for their energy program.
Of course you have the upfront cost of purchasing the device which is more expensive than a regular thermostat, but the savings are there.
Smart thermostats can save you money by regulating the temperature in your home to the most ideal based on the external temperature outside.
For example, at night when you may not be able to get up and turn the air conditioning down, the smart thermostat can do it for you as the temperatures outside fluctuate.
The savings apply to electricity as well. Smart home automation can turn off your lights when you’re not home and even turn off outlets automatically to prevent unnecessary electricity usage on things that are never being used.
Another reason why it pays to invest in smart home automation systems is because it can enhance your home security. You can’t be at home and work at the same time (unless you work from home).
Smart home automation allows you to check in on your house when you’re not there and even automatically monitor your doorstep to alert you every time someone walks up to your front door.
You can even have smart home security systems that will trigger an alarm if someone gets too close to your house after a certain hour.
Keep in mind that many of these systems also include professional monitoring. So, whenever the alarm goes off, it automatically sends an alert to a third party security company so they can sign on and see what’s going on at your house as well.
This works not only for security systems but for smoke, fire, and carbon monoxide as well. You can have a fire alarm that will alert you no matter where you are if it believes there is smoke or a fire at your home.
It’s expected that the Australian smart home market will grow to $4.61 billion by 2027. According to BusinessWire, this is primarily because smart homes make life easier for Australians. It’s as simple as that.
We live in a busy and fast-paced world where it seems like we’re always at each other’s throats. People are willing to sign up for anything that can make their life a little easier.
If you’re downstairs watching a movie and someone comes to the door, you no longer have to get up and check it because of your smart doorbell. You can simply check the camera and talk to the person from your couch without having to get up.
You can throw a load of laundry into the washing machine and have it start an hour before you get home so it’s done and you can move it into the dryer when you get back.
You can remotely allow people into the house in case your son or daughter gets home before you because you were stuck in traffic on the way home from work.
All of these things provide us with peace of mind and make life a little easier. The convenience of smart home automation systems are endless and we’ve only scratched the surface.
Creating a Smart Home in Australia
To create a smart home system, you need to start by purchasing a hub. Some of the most popular options are:
- Google Home
- Siri HomePod
Once you’ve done that, you’ll download the app to your smartphone and start compiling your end devices to install around the house.
Home automation is growing rapidly and changing everyday. If you’re considering diving into the world of smart home systems, there’s no better time than the present.
Get started with some of the smart home devices listed above and start living a more comfortable and convenient lifestyle.