8 Smart Homes and the IoT Revolution: Innovations, Benefits, and Challenges

New construction home with integrated technology, programmable thermostats, wifi garage door openers, USB ports in kitchen, integrated technology built-in

Our homes have always been a testing ground for innovative technology. Just look at the home telephone or electric lighting before that. But today, we are on the cusp of something altogether different. Some homes currently standing as part-constructed bricks and mortar will soon come “alive” with technology.

So-called “smart homes” are about to revolutionize the way we live. With technologies such as the Internet of Things (IoT) and 5G cellular capabilities, the homes of tomorrow will be interactive in a way never seen before.

Imagine a home that learns and anticipates your daily needs – from restocking the fridge with online orders automatically to turning the heating on before you wake up as it’s chillier than usual. That’s not science fiction. It’s only a few years from being our reality.

So, let’s look at the technological marvel that is the modern home and how it promises to deliver unparalleled living experiences.

The Rise of Smart Homes: What the Homes of Tomorrow Will Look Like

It’s tempting to think of a home with all kinds of technology, gadgets, and devices as already being smart. However, this isn’t the true meaning of a smart home. Bona fide smart homes represent an integrated ecosystem where various devices are constantly in communication with each other to enhance the living experience.

By leveraging internet connectivity, soon, even the most mundane devices in our homes will start recording, interpreting, and acting on the data points they collect.

Your fridge will soon be able to offer suggestions for recipes based on the content of your fridge, and your video doorbell will be able to use facial recognition software to detect the difference between a family member and a stranger. You’ll be able to talk to your voice-activated thermostat to tell it to bring the temperature down.

Rechargeable lithium aa batteries, also known as delta-V chargers, monitor the voltage levels of each battery and cease charging (or convert to a low trickle-charge mode) when they are full. Smart battery chargers are often the best option for keeping rechargeable batteries in good condition since they prevent overcharging, which can shorten battery life.

If you think smart speakers are impressive, you are on the cusp of having your expectations completely blown away.

What Are the Practical Benefits Associated with Smart Homes?

The allure of smart homes is undeniable. Below is a quick overview of what you can expect to enjoy as a future owner of one of these homes.

Enhanced Convenience

All of your home-based routines can and will become automated. From playing your favorite song as your alarm clock to having your coffee ready and waiting for you before you even make it downstairs. Once programmed, It will all happen automatically.

You will also be able to talk to almost any connected device. These systems will represent significant steps forward from Alexa and Google Assistant, with a much greater understanding of contexts and nuance.

Enhanced Energy Efficiency

IoT is set to totally transform our energy consumption. Imagine never accidentally leaving a light on or the air conditioning running while you’re out again. Smart thermostats will learn your living and personal preferences and tweak temperatures in the most cost-effective manner.

Homes with renewable energy sources will also have their power generation optimized to eliminate waste, with algorithms dictating when to store and release electricity.

Bolstered Safety and Security

Locks and video surveillance are also about to jump lightyears in functionality. Smart locks will allow homeowners to grant or deny access to the home from anywhere in the world.

Likewise, not only will you soon be able to see your home from wherever you may be, but facial recognition tech and advanced motion sensors will silently raise the alarm in the case of a breach inside the home or on the grounds of your property.

Improved Health and Well-Being

While you might not have immediately thought of health, smart homes will soon become a key player in this area. There are more obvious aspects, such as air quality monitors detecting toxic gasses like carbon monoxide. At the same time, your wearable tech can be linked to your home sensors to ensure a rapid response to a health emergency.

For instance, your smart watch can already detect cardiac arrest. But what will change is your home’s floor sensors will confirm someone has collapsed, alerting the central hub receiving all of this data that it should raise the alarm and call the EMTs. It could even ask for a verbal command to confirm consciousness and feed that information to emergency responders.

But as incredible as this all is, there are some concerns.

Do Smart Homes Present a Risk?

These incredible advancements do come with some inherent risks, and it’s an area that Northeastern University has been focusing its research as part of the newly-formed Northeastern SMART Center.

For instance, some of our recent research has unveiled that the ways in which devices communicate can pose risks to the security of our private information. Online trackers can also gain access to unique information via the built-in location-sharing features of some devices, revealing sensitive information about the home and its occupants.

Some mobile apps can also bypass some of the permission restrictions attached to these devices, again accessing information that should be private. The manufacturers of these IoT devices are working on mitigations, but it’s vital to make homeowners aware of these potential threats.

It’s also worth noting that, since the technology is in its infancy, we shouldn’t worry too much. These vulnerabilities will be worked on as smart homes are rolled out more widely.

When Can We Expect Smart Homes to Become the “New Normal”?

As with any era-defining technological advancement, it’s difficult to say when smart homes will outnumber “analog” ones. The shift is already underway, particularly in the new home building industry.

Leading names such as Terrata Homes already incorporate smart thermostats and Wi-Fi-enabled garage door openers. Crucially, with fiber connectivity, these homes are also ready for the impending smart home future. And that’s one of the key elements to remember – that retrofitting old homes to these new technologies will be more difficult. The forefront of the smart home rollout will come in the form of brand-new homes.

So, putting a timeline on it is difficult. Still, given the recent increase in new construction rates nationwide, a significant proportion of the country will live in smart-home-capable properties by 2025. By 2030, it’s estimated that more than half the population will have the ability (but not necessarily the means) to live in a completely smart home.

As a research institution, we will continue to invest resources and research into this life-changing technological advancement and report back with our findings.


mblog Copyright © by 89130361a. All Rights Reserved.

Share This Book