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What Are Some Important Home Automation Tips For 2020?

Home automation took off in the late 90s with the spread of the internet and its influence, and during 2020, the smart home is quickly gaining traction. Home automation is becoming more popular, and according to a 2016 Coldwell Banker Real Estate survey, 81 percent of homebuyers are more likely to purchase a home that features automation technologies.

Homeowners are adopting home automation technology at a rapid pace, but it’s a technically advanced project that requires planning and knowledge to execute. Here are some tips for getting started:

Always check for compatibility before selecting a home automation product

Home automation has only been around for a couple decades, so the industry hasn’t settled on the finer details of intercompatibility. There are many products that work fine on their own, but not with each other, and it’s difficult to tell at a glance when compatibility issues are present. Before committing to any product, verify that it will work with the home automation systems you already have in place.

Prioritize If This, Then That (IFTTT) when selecting home automation products

IFTTT is an intuitive way to link home automation systems together, so they can work even when they don’t communicate well. With IFTTT, users set up parameters for how their home automation technologies interact with each other, so repetitive tasks or tasks that would be impossible with compatibility issues can be executed. Products compatible with IFTTT allow homeowners much more creativity in how their home automation technology is utilized.

Consider cost-saving additions first

If you don’t know where to start with home automation, consider something like a smart thermostat first. Some home automation technologies can save homeowners a lot of money right away, so if you’re looking to automate as much of the house as possible, cost-saving technologies can reduce the expense.

Put strong network security in place

Home automation means your home, to an extent, is going online. While it’s unlikely that anyone will try to breach your home’s network through its smart lighting, it’s still a good idea to prepare for a future where everything is online. That means putting together a secure home network, which includes creating a strong password for the network and for the network admin, changing your default IP address and installing a firewall.

How will home automation change in 2020?

The home of today is starting to look like the smart home of the future, and if you’re making the transition to an automated home, it’s an exciting time to do so. That’s because there are several major advances in home automation ready to emerge in 2020. For example:

Smart devices will get smarter

When most people think of home automation, they think smart devices, but just because a device is connected to the internet doesn’t mean it’s smart. A connected home is easier to manage, easier to secure and easier to keep comfortable, but that doesn’t mean the technology is smart.

More smart technologies will make their way into the home in 2020. Smart thermostats can already determine when to adjust the temperature and humidity, using machine learning. A valuable home automation tip is choosing devices that can learn, as their performance will improve with time. Someone rushing out the door may forget to bump the thermostat up a few degrees when they leave for work, but a smart thermostat won’t, saving the homeowner money without any effort or forethought.

Machine learning, along with several other learning features, will be incorporated into additional home automation devices during 2020. For example, refrigerators designed with computer vision will be able to take pictures of what’s inside the fridge and use this information to put together a grocery list. Before long, smart fridges will automatically send out grocery orders, so homeowners need only pick up their order at the store.

Better security devices will improve home protection

Home surveillance and security are areas of focus for home automation experts, and in 2020, it will be easier to keep an eye on everything. Face recognition technology is becoming more robust, and before long, there will be smart cameras capable of using it to detect potential intruders. For example, someone walks by the property and triggers the camera’s motion detector. The camera automatically finds that person’s face, captures an image of it and crosschecks it against watch lists and most wanted databases. If there’s a match the surveillance system automatically sends an alert to nearby law enforcement.

New home cameras have been developed for the smart home in other ways, too. High-end models can stream video in 4K, come with advanced night vision modes, can automatically sound a siren or fire a spotlight, and are completely wireless. They can be installed nearly anywhere, so a useful home automation tip is to install smart cameras where they can take advantage of their wider field of view. That way they can detect potential threats before they approach the home.

Home automation in 2020 will involve more robots

Cleaning robots have been around since the turn of the millennium, but improved models that can do more, and do it faster, will start hitting the market in 2020.

These new robots can do much more than vacuum up floors. They can mop floors, mow the lawn and even teach children how to code. Manufacturers are developing robots that can work in conjunction, too, so if the vacuuming robot detects a dirty kitchen floor, it can tell the mopping robot where the mess is so it can get the job done.

Some soon-to-come models can also do more than clean. Smart robots with cameras and face recognition technology can provide mobile, around-the-clock surveillance in the home. They can also detect when someone is in distress or incapacitated, which can be life-saving if there are elderly people in the home.

Improved sensors will make it easier to maintain and monitor the home

Smarter sensors are also in development and will be available throughout 2020. Sensors are essential for data collection, and there’s plenty of data that homeowners could use. Smart sensors are already used to detect changes in temperature throughout the house, allowing smart thermostats to make better climate control decisions. That’s only the beginning, though.

For instance, smart sensors can be used to detect foundation problems, plumbing leaks, emerging appliance breakdowns, power usage, room occupancy and more. With this information collected, gathered and clearly presented to the user, homeowners can spot problems earlier, before they become more expensive to address. Smart sensors can even be used to detect termite and pest infestation, so homeowners essentially have eyes and ears everywhere.

Will home automation technology be standardized in 2020?

With most new technologies, the standardization process takes a while. This has held home automation back to an extent, as homeowners must juggle several platforms, along with their companion applications and standards. This has led to intercompatibility issues with home automation technology, particularly between major hardware providers like Amazon, Apple and Google.

This will begin changing in 2020 as more and more third-party hardware manufacturers enter the home automation space, so there’s a rising demand for unified standards. In response, Apple, Google and Amazon have announced plans to team together and work toward smart home standards. Once those standards are in place, homeowners will have a wider range of products to choose from. Further, as intercompatibility improves, so will ease of installation and setup, which means more people will be drawn to home automation in 2020.

How can a professional help with home automation?

Some tech enthusiasts have the knowledge they need to set up home automation systems, but for many homeowners, working with a professional will save a lot of time and frustration. Here’s why:

Professionals know what will work and what won’t

This goes beyond intercompatibility, though professionals are experts at that too. Home automation experts also know what tasks can be automated and what products are needed to automate those tasks.

Professionals know good network security

Every device is an entry point into your home network, and home automation professionals know how those devices should be organized and secured on your network. Home automation companies typically have a network security expert on their team to provide insight and assistance with important security matters.

Professionals can plan the project out well in advance

You may know what you want to automate now, but once you start integrating new home automation technology, new possibilities will emerge. A home automation expert is familiar with everything the industry has to offer, so they can create a thoroughly customized smart home for their clients.

The smart home promised to us for decades is arriving. Better AI, better networks and better hardware are leading to a better home – one that’s easier to manage, maintain and secure.


Can older light fixtures, like lamps, be used with home automation technology?
Many new fixtures offer advanced features, like color and brightness control, when connected to home automation. However, with the use of smart plugs, older fixtures can be turned on and off remotely. The light only needs to be plugged into the smart plug to achieve this effect.
Are there cameras available that come with face recognition features?
Current generation home surveillance cameras can recognize faces, which can be used to detect potential intruders from a distance. With facial recognition, devices that use cameras, like smart doorbell systems, can also track people as they move around the property, so homeowners always have an eye on everything.
What devices can be connected to home automation?
More and more automation-compatible devices are released every year. It is now possible to control lighting, sound systems, televisions, thermostats, door locks, security systems, kitchen appliances, garage door openers and an array of computing devices, smartphones, tablets and software.


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