Technology has moved into our homes. We have smart security systems, smart lighting, smart thermometers, smart sprinklers, smart sound systems, smart whatevers but…How smart do we have to be to set it all up and make it all work together so everything can be as smart as it can be?
Turns out we don’t have to be that smart because there are smart apps coming onto the market every day that are. But, before we get into some specifics about a few of these smart apps, make sure you have secure passwords for all your devices. The reason? One in six smart devices has security issues. And, for those who have five or more smart devices in use at home, 65% of those homes have security issues. No joke here in this “Internet of Things” world in which we live. A denial of service can be carried out by DVRs, routers, cameras, refrigerators, televisions so protect yourself and your home against malware attacks, known as Mirai, and make sure you have secure passwords for all your devices!
Now, onto some smart apps…
- Stringify -This is a platform that introduces or “flows” individual device components to and with each other. Single and multiple “cascading” flows get everything to work together simultaneously so, for example, you can turn off the lights, open the blinds, set the thermometer, etc. all at once.
- Smart Things – This Samsung app connects and customizes devices to one hub so all the devices choreograph together. A home monitoring kit and sensors that stick to anything (couch, back door, window, etc.) are part of this package. There are no monthly charges. The program sensors do specific things such as send video alerts if the kitchen door is open or send texts if there’s a water leak.
- Loxone – Called an autopilot, this application is a bundler just like #s 1 and 2. There is also a mini server so you can view and change settings for every view of the house. Loxone has a history, a short one obviously, of being hacked so secure those passwords.
- Muzzley – This app bundles your devices, predicts your behavior patterns and makes suggestions so your devices will better fit your lifestyle. Muzzley is connected to the web allowing remote control. Again, pay attention to passwords.
- IFTTT – This app, again a bundler, creates connections, called “chains” by this maker, so you can automate multiple devices and apps such as Instagram, Google, Trulia, Green ID, etc. without having to go back and forth between any devices.
- Thington – This app has a concierge service that helps you set it up. So far, no other app has this kind of amenity service. It provides one central location to manage all your devices. One major drawback here is that you must have a Twitter account to use this app. Another drawback, due to its most recent entry into the market, is that it has only six device/app partners as of right now. This consumer facing product combines smart home tech with expertise in location, social networking and the web of data.
Look to all these smart apps, and more not yet available but coming soon, to update, improve and help you better manage, organize and enjoy the energy, security and maintenance aspects of your smart home.