From Wi-Fi thermostats to video doorbells, we look at the AI technology making your home that little bit smarter.
Whether we like it or not, technology is, little by little, taking over the smooth-running of our homes. Our devices can switch our lights on and off, give us the news headlines over our morning coffee, answer probing questions from the internet, sing us songs, or bark like dogs should we so ask them to. Alexa’s dulcet tones chime from smart speakers in around 78% of UK homes, while 36% of Brits prefer Google Assistant, and sales of smart speakers tend to spike around Black Friday, when retail giants slash their prices and the home assistant technology becomes immediately more attractive.
Home assistant technology is only going to become more intelligent and more omnipresent in 2022, and it may not only improve your household organisation but save you money on your energy bills. Apps such as Nest and Hive thermostats study your household energy usage and adapt it to suit your needs, allowing you to save energy and lower costs. You can configure heat and light settings from these apps, controlling your energy usage far more accurately than turning a dial or flicking a switch on a boiler. It also helps on cold nights when heading back from work, or if you are caught unexpectedly in the rain – you can have your house toasty and warm for your return by remotely adjusting your heating from your phone. Also, if you are prone to accidentally leaving the heating on when you leave the house, smart thermostats allow you to correct the error of your forgetfulness when you’re on the go.
Ai is also making strides in home security, and sales of networked cameras, video doorbells, and smart speakers are expected to boom in 2022. Apps such as Ringo and Eufy allow you to answer your doorbell remotely when it rings, meaning that no matter where you are in the world you can see who’s standing on your front doorstep and speak to them directly. This should bypass any ‘sorry we missed you’ Royal Mail or delivery cards, but also fend off any unwanted guests you’d rather not answer the door.
Linking smart devices will be huge in 2022, thanks in small part to the arrival of Matter. The big AI home assistant players such as Amazon, Google and Apple have agreed that Matter will be a connectivity standard that allows all smart home devices to communicate with each other. In layman’s terms, that means your Siri and Alexa can be friends, and your TV remote can talk to your thermostat. This groundbreaking development is a huge move towards the technological utopia of ‘The Internet of Things’ which will see homes have an interrelated system of objects – from the app that tracks the location of your cat to your bedside lamp – which share data and learn from your surroundings without the need for human intervention. And if that sounds like the robots are planning to overthrow us in 2022, it’s probably because they are.