The Latest Integrated Technologies for 2019

Internet of Things (IoT) Devices … 

 

Automation is exactly what it sounds like:  the ability to access and control items safely with a simple push of a button (or a voice command). It begins and ends with adding convenience, comfort, and peace of mind.

What Is Integrated Technology?

A 21st century property can be a myriad of advanced systems each with its own controls.  What if you could securely connect, access, and control all the devices in your life by your voice, through your phone, pad, and with a login/password from any computer in the world?  It is not just computers and phones anymore, but everything:  clocks, lights, thermostats, doorbells, door locks, security cameras, windows, window blinds, hot water heaters, music, television, appliances, you name it. And what if those devices could all communicate, send you information, and take your commands? It’s not science fiction; it’s the Internet of Things.  IoT devices can now be cloud/wifi network connected safely and securely.

Windows:  Motorized window treatments you can easily adjust the amount of daylight in your home to increase comfort, save energy, and protect interiors. Motorized shading and drapery transforms harsh glare into soft pleasing light, enhances privacy while preserving exterior views, reduces solar heat gain, provides UV protection of expensive furnishings and artwork, and provides the ability to change daytime into nighttime for restful sleep with the simple press of a button. Clients and designers have hundreds of window treatment fabric and color options available to compliment any décor.

Networking:  Networking is the central nervous system for all communications and control. We’ll help lay a solid and reliable foundation that’s robust for today’s technology and for tomorrow’s. We will work with you to find a complete networking solution that satisfies all of your needs including your TV, telephone, music, security, control system and mobile devices that are connected on the network in a smart home. A high-speed and secure network provides the functionality and protection you desire.

Audio and Video:  Audio and Video distribution systems send music to any room via a central processor or matrix switcher. The days of a volume knob on the wall are long gone. Control is simple and intuitive by means of a touch panel, keypad, handheld RF remote, iPad® or similar Wi-Fi smart device. Whether the speakers are placed in the walls, ceiling, bookshelves, shower or pool, they can be designed to aesthetically blend in to minimize visual impact. In fact, if you can’t get wires to a location, no problem. We have wireless solutions that enable you to enjoy your music from anywhere. You’ll need fewer components since a single music server or a Pandora station from your smart phone can be shared in one, several, or all the rooms of your home.

Climate Control:  Smart climate control makes it easy for you to set the perfect temperature regardless of the season or other conditions. Create a comfortable environment by making adjustments from the same touch screen you use to control your lights, shades, and home entertainment system. Monitor and control your thermostats from a mobile device if you left your AC blasting when left home or turn up the heat before you return on a cold day. Heating and cooling your home can be expensive and our climate control solutions save you energy with programmed settings and integration to a home automation system.

Smart Home Hubs and Controllers: Bluetooth speakers powered by Alexa, Amazon’s handy voice assistant. Alexa works with a number of smart home devices directly, as well as with If This Then That (IFTTT) to control plenty of others via “recipes” you can create yourself. It’ll take some work, but you can use Alexa to control most of the gadgets in your house by the sound of your voice. If you already have a favorite speaker, the inexpensive Echo Dot can connect to it and add Alexa functionality. And if you want a touch screen to see search results and make video calls, check out the Echo Show or Echo Spot.

Wall switches:  Use Wi-Fi to connect to and control various smart devices in your home. It has a 5-inch color touch screen with user-friendly button controls that let you play music, control lighting, set thermostat temperatures, and see who is at your door, among other things. It works with many popular smart home platforms including Ecobee, Nest, Philips Hue, Ring, and Sonos, and it has built-in Amazon Alexa voice support that allows it to do almost everything an Echo device can do. It’s fairly pricey and requires wiring knowledge to install, but it’s a smart addition to a high-tech home.

SmartPlug:  While we’ve yet to find a smart switch that does absolutely everything, the $29.99 iHome iSP6X SmartPlug comes pretty close. It lets you easily controls gadgets and appliances from your smartphone, while delivering an unparalleled level of third-party smart home integration. Not only does it support Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant voice control, it also works with Apple HomeKit, Nest, Samsung SmartThings, and Wink. It lacks energy monitoring, but makes up for it with robust scheduling options, an intuitive app, and painless installation.

Security:  The Best of 2019 (Security) for more info

Lighting:  The Best of 2019 (Lighting) for more info

Smart Lock: This third-generation smart lock offers all the bells and whistles you get with the HomeKit model, and adds a few new features, including August’s DoorSense technology, Z-Wave compatibility, and Wi-Fi connectivity. It’s easy to install and can be controlled remotely or with Alexa, Google Assistant, or Siri voice commands, and it retains the sleek aesthetics of its siblings. It’s pricey, but it’s the best smart lock we’ve tested

Remote Sensors: help to help reduce hot or cold spots in different rooms. We’re happy to report that the new Ecobee4 boasts all the same features as it predecessor, and more, thanks to the addition of built-in Amazon Alexa voice service capabilities. That means you can have the thermostat do everything that the Amazon Echo and its siblings can, such as control smart devices, shop, play music, and hear the latest news and weather, all using Alexa voice commands.

Learning Thermostat:  has Wi-Fi so you can remotely control the temperature from phone, tablet, or PC. This latest generation also has a larger display and a few more sensors than its predecessors, in addition to geofencing support and a furnace monitor. If you find it a bit too pricey, Nest also offers the Thermostat E, which has most of the same smart features for $80 less.

Vacuum/Mops:  Even if you hate cleaning, shelling out several hundred dollars for a robot vacuum or mop can seem a little extravagant. Robot vacuums and mops get smarter with each generation. In addition to Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant voice control, multistory mapping, and adaptive camera-based navigation that cleans better as it learns your home’s layout, it’s the only vacuum we’ve tested that can empty its own dustbin. You can go as far as to get a robot vacuum that doesn’t require you to lift a finger. And isn’t that why you want one in the first place?

Smart Sprinkler Controller:  The latest Rachio Smart Sprinkler Controller gives you control over eight or 16 zones depending on the unit you get, with a master valve terminal for systems that have one. It won’t water the lawn if it’s raining, and you can turn it on and off remotely with your phone. Plus, it integrates with lots of other services and devices like Amazon’s Alexa, Google Assistant, IFTTT, and Samsung SmartThings.

 

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