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Home Automation 101: An Introduction

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By: Editor
November 21, 2013
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Home Automation 101: An Introduction

Everywhere you turn, people are talking about home automation. From automatic door locks to lights that turn on using a smart phone app, homes are getting smarter than ever. This is a trend that won’t be going away!

Now, you may know nothing or very little about home automation, and that’s OK! Whether you’re a guru with a robotic home or a beginner who just got his/her first smartphone, you’ve come to the right place.

Throughout the next few weeks, we’re going to explore home automation: from the basic setup to its advance features. We aim to answer all your questions and make this growing trend a little more feasible, even for the technologically challenged. By the time this course is over, you’ll be a bona fide home automation expert.

Technology for an Easier Life

So what is home automation? To put it simply, it’s the use of computers and other electrical devices to automate household activities and tasks. Computer and information technology is at a point where devices can “speak” with each other, while running their systems with minimal user input.

You should also know these “smart” devices share no similarities to HAL-9000 from “2001: A Space Odyssey” or the villain from “Terminator 2”, T-1000. They are not trying to destroy you!

Home automation was designed to help you, by making simple tasks easier. You can schedule when your lights to turn on or set the thermostat to change automatically based on your location. You can even feed your pets on a timer!

Pinching Pennies

All this high-tech wizardry sounds expensive, doesn’t it? On the contrary, home automation can often save you money. Many of these smart devices are energy-efficient and some are designed to either turn off or enter “standby” mode when you’re not around. As a result, you end up using fewer utilities – water, electricity, gas – and can effectively lower your monthly bills.

For example, let’s say you've invested in a new automated thermostat. You can control it remotely or set it so the temperature changes automatically throughout the day. While you’re away for work, the thermostat automatically adjusts to your settings, resulting in the AC and heater running less. Additionally, you can set it to adjust to a livable temperature around the same time you return home. At last, you’re not waiting for your home to cool off or warm up, it’s ready for you to just enjoy.

The Dynamic Duo: Home Security and Home Automation

You may be wondering why we’re teaching Home Automation 101. After all, we normally focus on Home Security. The fact is home security and home automation work very well together.

Many home security systems come with home automation features enabled. In fact, all FrontPoint Security systems come ready for use with wireless light controls, automated locks, and thermostats.

During this series, we’ll be looking into every aspect of automated equipment and its uses. Next week, we’re jumping straight into the meat of it all and looking at how the equipment works. Sit back and enjoy as we dive into the world of self-changing thermostats and remote-controlled homes. Welcome to Home Automation 101.

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