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Getting Started with Smart Home Tech
Want to upgrade your home to a smart home but don't know where to start? Our guide will take you through the benefits of smart home technology, the different types of devices on the market, and things to consider when you're buying!

 Top Smart Home Brands

 

Amazon
Google
Philips
TP-Link
Samsung
Honeywell
Sonos
Nest
Netgear
LG

 Benefits of Smart Home Technology
Convenience
The biggest perk of smart home technology is that it does the work for you – you can trigger actions with voice commands if your hands are full, or through an app while you’re cozy in bed. Plus, it gives you the ability to control things even when you’re not home, allowing you to monitor your house while you’re on vacation or check to make sure you remembered to lock the door while you’re at work.
Customizability
Just set it and forget it! Smart tech allows you to set things just the way you like them, and remembers your preferences in the future. That means you don’t have to mess with the dimmer switch or home audio levels every time you use them.
Cost & Energy Efficiency
While smart home tech can be an investment, you’ll most likely end up saving money and energy in the long run. You can monitor your energy usage to identify power drains, and set timers and schedules to turn off lights, appliances, and temperature regulation when you’re not using them. 

 Types of Smart Home Devices

 Things to Consider
Do You Need a Hub?
If you’re buying a kit, like a home security system or a set of smart plugs, it may come with a wireless hub that allows you to control all your devices from one location. If not, you may want to purchase a hub or a voice assistant (like Amazon’s Alexa or Google Assistant) to help you manage your devices.
Compatibility
Not all smart devices are compatible, so make sure the device you’re considering will work with any devices you already have, as well as your phone.
Wired vs. Wireless
Many smart devices are wireless, but some need to be plugged in to power or even your router. Wireless devices are convenient, but they will need to charge or have batteries changed out, which can be drawbacks depending on your needs.
Service Plans & Subscriptions
Some systems require a monthly subscription fee for services like cloud storage and backup, or automatically alerting the authorities when alarms are triggered. If your needs are basic, look for devices or systems that don’t require a subscription to minimize your costs.
Range
Because many smart devices rely on Bluetooth or wifi connections, they may have a limited range. Make sure the devices you’re considering have range that matches the size of the area they’ll be covering.