Automate Your Life with Smart Home Devices & More
First Things First
Smart home technology may be sophisticated, but it can’t read your mind (yet). If you want your various devices to work together, you’ll need to do a little work upfront.
Customized Voice Commands
Many smart home devices integrate with voice assistants like Amazon’s Alexa or Google Home. Use your phone’s Alexa or Google Home app to set up actions or chains of automated processes you can trigger with a single command. Refer to your device’s manual or Web site to learn how.
Chaining Devices Together
One app that can help you set those processes up and automate your life is IFTTT (If This Then That), which connects all kinds of smart home devices, so one automated event can trigger another. IFTTT is available free on iOS and Android and makes setting up these connections easy and intuitive.
You can also install a smart home hub to connect wirelessly to a variety of devices and get them working together.
Rise & Shine
Getting out of bed is easier when your home is already up and running. Speak a custom voice command like “rise and shine” to your home assistant or Smartphone to trigger multiple automated tasks at once and get your morning routine in motion.
- Open the blinds
There’s nothing like waking up to natural light. Smart blinds can be set to open at a particular time or whenever the sun comes up.
- Brew a fresh pot
Set up your smart coffee maker to have your latte, cappuccino or plain old cup of joe ready by the time you make it to the kitchen.
- Feed the beast(s)
Yes, there are smart pet feeders. Serve up puppy or cat chow automatically, with pre-set portions to prevent overeating. Smart pet doors can let them out in the morning – perfect for pets that wake up even earlier than you do.
Honey, I’m Home
When you’re wrapping up a long day at the office, it’s time to put your devices to work. Set up a Smartphone voice command to trigger an automated chain of the things you do every evening so your house is ready and waiting.
- Tidy the place up
Program your internet-enabled robotic vacuum to make sure the floors are clean when you get home. You can also integrate your vacuum with your phone so it pauses whenever you have an incoming call.
- Preheat the oven
Smart ranges help you get a head start on dinner (or just heating up leftovers).
- Set the mood
Turn on your smart lights and cue up the music on your smart home assistant for a relaxing night, dance party or anything in between.
When you go on vacation, your smart devices can too. Set up an “away mode” that activates via Smartphone voice command to reduce energy use and keep your house safe while you’re gone. Think of it like setting an out-of-office response for your home.
- Power down
Smart lightbulbs can turn on and off on a schedule, remotely or at certain “trigger events,” and a smart thermostat can adjust your heating and cooling systems based on your proximity to your home.
- Stay safe and secure
With smart locks, you’ll never have to ask, “Did I lock the back door?” Indoor and outdoor security cameras steam video to your phone 24/7. And a video doorbell can alert you to any visitors.
- Tell the fridge to chill
Smart refrigerators with “Vacation Mode” can turn off or lower the fridge temperature while keeping the freezer running. You won’t be opening the doors, so your food will still stay fresh.