The smart home market isn’t only about high-tech equipment, projector screens that roll down, and military-grade automated security for your home. Sometimes, it’s just the little things that matter.
A bunch of devices integrated with smart assistance with compatible hardware is all you need to get started with Smart Home Automation. For instance, music device companies such as Bose and Sonos already have smart Bluetooth portable speakers with Google Assistant or Alexa built-in thereby allowing you to start or stop the music just by giving voice commands.
Alexa — which is Amazon’s smart assistant that comes packaged with devices such as Amazon Echo, Amazon Dot, and several other devices — can already do a lot for you, while you are at home.
For instance, Alexa can create to-do lists, build up a sequence of reminders for you, set alarms, stream podcasts on demand, play audiobooks for you, read PDFs on the fly, read email, provide weather forecasts, warn you of traffic on the route you are about to set off on, answer trivia, and more.
More specifically, you can also use Alexa to help you control your home as long as the hardware (such as lights, thermostats, etc.) are all compatible.
If you already have an Alexa-enabled device and if you are about to go shopping, maybe trying to invest in a few things that are Alexa compatible is a good idea.
Have more than one device that’s Alexa-enabled? Maybe you can double down on Alexa devices such as Amazon Echo and Amazon Dot.
With the following handy Alexa routines and commands for Alexa, you can now step into the world of Smart Home Automation, without really doing much:
“Alexa, please cool the room”
“Alexa, Increase temperature by 5 degrees” Or “Alexa, cool the room by 50%”
Ecobee4 is a smart thermostat — it learns your base temperature at home, your heating and cooling patterns, it’s compatible with other sensors to gauge the temperature in other rooms of your home, and it’s probably one of the easiest thermostats you can install for yourself.
Of course, it’s a thermostat that works great with Alexa as well. After installation, all you have to do is to talk to Alexa which Ecobee comes packaged with.
“Alexa, Turn off the lights”
There’s no better feeling in the world than to just collapse on your bed and let someone else take care of the dreary task of switching off the lights. Now, you don’t have to do that, thanks to Alexa.
While several manufacturers now have smart lights and possibly entire home lighting systems available, Phillips Hue light bulbs are not only economical (relatively) but they also come with Alexa compatibility.
If you happen to use Phillips Hue and have Alexa, you can just switch lights on and off with voice (and also with an app that Phillips ships out, just in case you don’t want to use voice commands with Alexa).
“Alexa, arm (or disarm) security camera”
Security for your home doesn’t have to be an intimidating affair. It’d be so much better if most of the security part is automated after installation.
With Blink XT2, you can do just that. With features such as 2-way audio (through an app or phone), Customisable motion detection which uses activity zones so that you can choose where motion is detected.
Then, receive the kind of alerts that matter to you. You also get cloud storage, recording and viewing of video clips in 1080p during the day and HD during the night.
But the best part is that BlinkXt2 works with Alexa. Using Alexa you can view live streams, arm and disarm your camera through selected Alexa-enabled devices.
“Alexa, Clean the floor”
It’s a dream if someone else could clean the floor occasionally. While domestic help is hard to find, Alexa can help (almost for free). By using a robotic hard floor cleaner, you could literally have Alexa clean or scrub your floor anytime by just giving a voice command.
The Robot Vaccum Cleaner from Eufy, for instance, comes with Alexa pre-packaged with it. The Robot Vaccum Cleaner is a super-thin robot vacuum cleaner that can eliminate dirt from under beds, sofas and hard to reach areas with zero effort. It helps sweep or scrub hard floors and also carpets to clean the dust and pet hair.
The Robot Vaccum Cleaner can support up to 100 minutes of cleaning (with noise not louder than your microwave).
It also comes with The EufyHome app and Amazon Alexa and the Google Assistant voice control services — which will all let you accomplish your vacuuming needs with zero effort from you.
“Alexa, Show Me Camera Feed In the Nursery Room”
DLink has a huge variety of products to help you connect doors, windows, and security systems (not to mention your Smart TV, your home Internet router, your DVD player, game consoles, or your network storage hubs).
Let’s say you use the Dlink routers for the Internet at home and also have door sensors or window sensors (along with your home theatre system, DVD player, Smart TV, and several other devices at home).
The mydlink Connected Home Hub acts as the link between your existing Wi-Fi network and all mydlink Home devices. Use it with mydlink Home sensors to be alerted when your door or window is opened, or when motion is detected in your home.
Use Alexa commands to get instant alerts, check to see if there are any breaches, or shut everything down when you need to.
It’s easy to set up and manage with the mydlink Home app and connects to your existing router. Whether you are at home or away, push notifications will alert you whenever a sensor is triggered.
Plug into your home router and also provide Internet connectivity to your smart TV, DVD player, CCTV cameras (in any room), PC, game console or network storage.
What kind of Alexa-enabled devices do you use at home? What sort of Alexa commands are your favourites?