Herald Sun Home Magazine

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Hartsco had a conversation recently with Herald Sun home magazine on the rise of home automation in Australia.

As you can read in the article, there really has been a recent influx of new systems and options when considering a smart home / home automation solution. With technology heavyweights Apple and Google entering the fray, along with solid manufacturer input from companies such as Samsung, Panasonic, Sony, LG, Bosch and Canon, you know this technology is only a step away from becoming common place.

However, like most technologies, how do you separate the value add systems from the, “that’s great and all, but what exactly does it do” group? Interoperability (compatibility), is key.

Try not to be swayed by one single manufacturers offering if it doesn’t have the capability to interact and work with other areas of your home, now, and in the future. It’s fantastic that we can now do so many things with a smart phone or tablet, but a home automation system is going to get frustrating very quickly if you have to use a dozen different applications to interact with it, or spend three minutes opening you phone, find an application and navigate within it just to turn on or off a light.

To plan out what you want it to do, start with thinking about the convenience and security items, the things you wish you could do quickly and easily as you run out the door late for an appointment or sit on the train on your way to the office - are all lights turned off, did I lock the door and arm the alarm, did I turn off the iron?

Extend that to the monthly budget pain points, (of which there’s probably a cross over between the pain points and the convenience items), - how do I reduce my electricity and heating bills, how can I know if my electricity consumption is abnormally high this week?

Then add in the lifestyle and luxury items such as home theatres, distributed audio, outdoor entertaining spaces.

Remember, you don’t have to do all of this in the one go. A smart solution should be able to grow with your needs and budget and should continue to add value to your home and lifestyle over time.