Loading up the dishwasher, storing food in refrigerators, and drying clothes after a wash are all early forms of home automation. Many people don’t realize that these modern conveniences that we’ve used for decades are the beginning of technology affecting the way we interact with life and the world. Something as simple as opening a garage door is home automation.
Due to the IoT (Internet of Things) we’ve seen a rise in devices that are automated and can be controlled within the home. Everything from crock pots, lights, to refrigerators. But where will this technology take us? Where will we end up going? Let’s explore the future of home automation.
Problems Will be Fixed
Most automation tools operate via a few different communication protocols: Z-Wave, Zigbee, and WiFi. They use IFTTT (if this, then that) technology. This is what “scenes” at Protect America uses. The technology that allows you to create sequences in the home. For example: if you turn lights off, the alarm system will arm itself.
Since home automation is operating over a few different products, some customers have been unhappy with the lack of congruence in bringing together all of these systems. Different companies and manufacturers use different communication tech for their tools. In the future we can likely expect seamless integration with all of these tools, or maybe even one single communication protocol for everything.
All Variables Accounted For
Humans are complex creatures. A number of variables and environmental factors can affect how we interact with our days and our homes. We may have a consistent week of getting home at 6 p.m., going to bed at 10 p.m., and then we change the schedule for three days before returning back to normal. This same process can be similar for temperatures we choose, lights used, and other home factors.
One of the current issues with home automation is that it doesn’t always do the best job of guessing our schedule or making a plan for our environmental and other variables.
In the future we will likely see home automation products that are incredibly sophisticated at reading, predicting, and enacting their findings from the home.
Energy Efficient and Environment Friendly
As society grows more conscious of the environmental risks that affect our world, we will continue to see products that operate according to our concerns. Most home automation products aren’t exactly omitting poisonous gases into the air—or affecting the environment in any way—but we may start to see a wave of devices that are created with the sole purpose of taking care of the environment.
This will happen similar to how smart thermostats are able to adjust temperatures and save energy. We can imagine that other products in the home will do the same: washing machine, dishwasher, water heaters, fridges, and other energy systems will be highly efficient. Since everything may be going toward the trend of solar, that may add another energy saving solution.
Some futurists even believe that eventually our walls, ceilings, counter-tops, windows, and other parts of the home will be connected to smart technology. These areas of the home may be able to clean themselves due to their coating, and they could even work as makeshift computer screens, similar to “smart glass.”
Smart glass is a product that is already capable of reading external and internal temperatures, then it reacts and records the glare or increases in airflow through the glass, but it depends on a localized environment.
Efficient and Effective Future
Through solar energy, windows might eventually become energy production centers. Solar technology could begin to further integrate with smart home technology.
Some futurists say that home automation technology and systems will be able to predict changes of biological data of people in the home. This could mean tracking changes in the body to stay on top of medications and the health concerns that people have.
Regardless of where technology goes—or which of these ideas happens—the future will likely be an exciting time that is both efficient and cost-effective. We’ll see you there.