If you’ve heard of any new news related to technology, apart from the latest smartphones, you’ve most definitely hear of companies like Google, Apple, Amazon talk about Future of Homes and Smart Homes.
Previously, getting a smart home for a 1000Sqft 2BHK house would cost upwards of Rs. 1,50,000 just for accessories and server room etc. However major companies like Apple, Amazon, Google etc. have heavily invested in smart homes (Smart Home Market reportedly will be a $53 Billion market by 2022) the technology is affordable – to a point where you can live in the “future” for as little as Rs. 5000
The Brain of Your Smarthome
Every smart home will need a “brain” or “CPU” – the main area from where you make decisions. The CPU will be the main point from where commands are transmitted, intelligence is built, and finally automated processes are set.
It’s from here you control your entire house, all the devices.
The “brain” of your smarthome will need to have the following features:
- Support a lot of devices
- Able to easily add new devices
- Keeps your data secure and private
- Difficult to hack
- Easy to customize and configure
- Easy for anyone – even your Grand Dad to use 🙂
So, what’s the brain which I suggest? You have two options supporting the above parameters,
You can’t go wrong with either one of them. However, I have felt for India, Amazon Alexa work better and supports a lot more devices. You can get a 3rd Gen Alexa for Rs. 2449 when its on discount (and it’s on discount very very often).
Both these devices serve as access points to Alexa or Google Home – which will be the brains of your Smarthome. The best part – both Google and Amazon are constantly upgrading them. Now let me tell you something incredible, even if you don’t use Alexa device, you can easily use the Alexa app or Google assistant app, so it’s not mandatory to invest in these two. So, to keep the budget low, we will resort to using their apps, which are COMPLETELY FREE.
Now that we have a brain for our smart-home, let’s start adding different layers to make it feel futuristic. We will speak about 3 specifically:
Lighting can literally change your mood. It make you feel relaxed, energetic, or even romantic.
The main advantage of a smart-home is the lighting part can be automated as per your mood or even as per time.
For starters, you can start with the Wipro Smart Tubelight.
This will set you back just Rs. 999 and you’ll get a taste for smart lighting.
You can set commands, for example you can say “Alexa set the Movie scene” and it’ll become a nice warm light to make sure you can enjoy your TV.
So, just to start, it makes sense to purchase one of these, I recommend them over smart bulbs because the Smart LED baton provides a much better value for money.
Smart Home Light Switches
One of the most powerful uses of home automation is when you can say “Alexa, turn on the geyser for 20 mins” and automatically the geyser is turned on and it turns off without you having to worry.
In fact, using one of Alexa or Google assistant, you can setup a routine to automatically turn on your appliances. To accomplish this, you need a smart home light switch/ socket. One, which I feel serves this purpose very well is the 16AMPs Smart Socket. It’ll cost you Rs.1,499. For regular appliances, they even have a 10 AMPs version.
Now, let’s talk about something more critical. Security of your home. There are of course CCTV cameras which you can install, however they are extremely difficult to install, and never work as expected.
There is one option which works very well, all you have to do is “Alexa show me the camera” on your phone’s Alexa app, and it’ll immediately start showing you what’s going on at your home/ office.
Our recommendation is the D Link Wifi camera. It connects to your local Wifi, and gives you ability to access the footage from anywhere in the world. All you’ll need is an internet connection. It’ll set you back about Rs. 2,499 but having that peace of mind when you’re away is worth it.
So, if you want to live in the future, don’t think you can’t afford it, you can setup your automated home for Under Rs. 5,000 and start experiencing how we will live in the future.