A smart home is a house equipped with “smart” appliances and other devices, such as smart light bulbs and switches, thermostats, security systems and other internet-enabled gadgets. If you have a smart television or smart thermostat, you’re already using smart home technologies.
Smart devices typically connect to the internet via Wi-Fi in your residence. Many can be controlled via a central hub. Smart home devices can also often be controlled remotely via an app on your smartphone or through voice activation using Alexa or another voice assistant.
Smart home upgrades address many important aspects of aging in place. As we get older, we need to think about taking extra safety precautions in the home to help with potential decreased mobility, increased risk of falls and reduced vision that can come with age. With many smart devices, family members can also help monitor your safety and security if you share passwords, security questions and other login data with them. Smart technologies are fun and convenient and can help empower mature adults to live safer, more robust lives in their homes despite existing health conditions.
Here’s a quick rundown of different types of smart home technologies:
Wi-Fi or a wired internet connection enables you to operate a smart device, security system, appliance or other technology in your home.
Remote access via an app on your smartphone allows you to control smart devices from virtually anywhere.
Voice activation technology helps you operate smart home devices and appliances by speaking instructions. Amazon Echo with Alexa is a well-known example of a voice-activated device.
Smart displays feature touchscreens and/or voice command capabilities to help control smart home devices.
A Bluetooth connection pairs smart devices with a smartphone app to control and adjust settings.