You've likely been hearing about the Internet of Things (IoT) more and more, thanks to the explosion in smart home technology. But what, exactly, is the IoT?
The best way to explain it is through examples. Do you wear a Fitbit that counts the number of steps you take each day? Can you turn your home's security system on and off through your smartphone? Have you programmed your thermostat to your perfect "wake up" temperature? Or maybe you have electric shades in your bedroom that open and close depending on when the sun shines. Or maybe you work in an office building that tracks who's entered—and when—and adjusts room temperature accordingly.
These are all examples of the Internet of Things—connected devices that produce dizzying amounts of data. Consider this:
- Cisco reports that by the year 2020, the IoT will comprise of more than 30 billion connected devices.
- According to this article in Forbes, the Boston Consulting Group says the IoT market will reach $267 billion 2020.
- And Business Insider reports that by 2020, the number of shipped smart home devices will reach 193 million (think smart appliances, security systems, and—of course—lighting).
IoT Benefits to Homeowners: Real-Life Examples
The biggest benefit is control: you suddenly have more control over everyday objects than ever before.
- Heading home after a weeklong vacation and want to enter a warm, well-lit house? Make it happen from your phone as you're landing at Logan.
- Want to save money on your energy bill? Install smart devices that track energy usage and adjust accordingly.
- Too lazy to get up from the comfy couch to turn on the ceiling fan? Just tap an app on your phone or tell Alexa to do it for you (see our post on Minka-Aire ceiling fans' integration with BOND Home for more details).
- Want to program your shades to open and close on a certain schedule? Done!
- Interested in setting certain lighting "moods" in your home? Yep, the IoT can handle that as well.
- Want to play music in every room in your house? Or maybe your kids want to listen to one type of music in the playroom while you listen to something else in the kitchen? Easy peasy.
Some IoT Product Highlights
- Philips Hue. We talked about Philips Hue a couple of months ago, but it's getting such rave reviews that we wanted to mention it again. Philips Hue lamps and light switches easily integrate with your tablet, smartphone, and other interfacing devices. Read more about it here.
Sonos Wireless Speakers. As its website states, "Bedroom. Kitchen. Living room or bathroom. If you have a room, there's a Sonos wireless speaker that will sound great in it." Benefits include:
- Play music in any/every room
- Control from your smartphone app
- Integrate with Amazon Alexa
- Works with new construction or renovations—just need power and Wi-Fi to connect
Even better? Our System 7 and Wolfers Lighting team can help make all of your IoT dreams a reality. Just ask how we can integrate all of your smart home needs, from sound to lighting to shades…and more! Make an appointment soon.