Do you want a smart home? Here’s how you can get one

New Delhi: Until even a couple of years ago, setting up a smart home was limited to a few light bulbs and controlling them with a smartphone. Now, users can regulate the temperature of the AC with voice, get the lights to switch on/off as someone enters and leaves the room or keep an eye on home remotely.

Although the smart home ecosystem is not as mature as those in the West, the home automation market in India is growing and likely to cross ₹30,000 crore by 2022, according to a Research and Markets report.

Devices under ₹50,000 : A basic one with the option to control lights, switches, play music and secure the household with a smart camera can cost less than ₹50,000. Users can control these IoT devices with their smartphone or smart speakers, such as Amazon’s Echo Plus (starts at ₹11,999) and Google Home (₹8,999).

To control lights, users need to switch to smart lights, such as the Philips Hue Mini Starter Kit (starts at ₹12,480). It includes three 10W smart bulbs and a bridge, which connects these bulbs wirelessly. It works with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant (AI voice assistants powering Echo and Google Home speakers, respectively), letting users switch on/off lights in any room, change their colour to match the mood and schedule automatic switching off in the morning. Users can also control switches around household using WiFi-ready smart switches or power extensions. Smarteefi’s WiFi Smart Power Extension Strip (₹2,799) is one such option. It supports Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. Each socket can be controlled and programmed individually. The Oakter Smart Home Kit (₹13,716) can connect and control multiple standalone smart plugs over WiFi, allowing users to switch on/off their ACs, geysers, TVs and lamps using voice commands.

Users can also secure their home with WiFi-ready smart cameras like Ezviz Mini O 1080p (₹4,390). It can be controlled through Echo speakers, provides remote access to footage in 1080p resolution via the Ezviz app with a wide angle view of 135 degree. It supports night vision and has motion sensors to detect prowlers and alert users.

The other smart option for security are motion sensors, which can spot thieves or children trying to access off-limit areas. One such option is the Philips Hue Motion Sensor (₹7,890), which supports both Alexa and Google Assistant. It can connect with the Hue bulbs and light them up when a person walks into the room.

Among kitchen-related items, there is the Nescafe E Connected Mug (₹6,499), a Bluetooth-enabled coffee maker, which can be paired and controlled with any smartphone. Users can switch it on, adjust temperature, choose recipes and brew coffee using the Nescafe E app.

Above ₹50,000: Setting up IOT homes with TVs, ACs and fridge which can be controlled with voice can cost upward of Rs 50,000. Voltas recently launched a WiFi-enabled 3 Star Inverter Split AC (₹34,999), which lets users adjust temperature, fan speed and set timers using Alexa voice commands via the Echo speakers or smartphones.

Vaccum cleaning robots such as the WiFi-enabled iRobot Roomba 671 (₹29,900), can be activated using voice commands from an Echo speaker and scheduled to clean with the app. For smarter WiFi connectivity, there is the Linksys WHW0103 Velop AC3900, a dual-band intelligent WiFi system (₹23,499) with three routers, which can be controlled with smartphones or Echo speaker.

Users looking for a smart fridge, can opt for the Samsung’s Family Hub (₹2,80,000). It can be connected to a smartphone and let users see the contents of the fridge or adjust the temperature remotely. Sony’s 43-inch Bravia KD-43X8200E 4K LED TV (₹75,990) is another connected device which supports Alexa, allowing users to switch on/off or adjust volume using voice commands.

source: livemint


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