The Internet of Things (IoT) is busy connecting the entire world, one home at a time. Amazon recently announced its intentions to conquer the home even more with an entirely new range of Alexa-powered devices including microwaves, kettles and electrical outlets. The industry giant has also announced a partnership with Lennar, the nation's largest homebuilder, who is now manufacturing model homes with fully-integrated Alexa technologies and custom software responses made possible thanks to the Alexa Skill Blueprints. While IoT home takeover might still be a while away, there is a myriad of other smart gadgets already revolutionizing various areas of our homes.
IoT and Electricity Management
Americans are becoming increasingly vigilant with regards to saving energy and preserving the environment, a collective effort that can be significantly boosted by the use of smart monitors in the home. Smart electricity monitoring systems, such as the Smappee and CURB can help restrict wastage by tracking electrical consumption and alerting the user of spikes in usage. Once a smart meter is installed and linked, the consumer will be presented with a holistic report on their cell phone of exactly where and what is consuming electricity, which enables them to alter their behavior or devices to adjust consumption favorably.
IoT and Healthy Eating Habits
With obesity affecting approximately 93.3 million of US adults according to the CDC, and costing the US in excess of $210 billion per year in health care costs, smart gadgets that can encourage healthy eating are a welcome addition to any home. The Smart Chef Smart Food Scale is just one example of IoT promoting personal health and well-being products. This and other pocket-sized Bluetooth scales allow users to link their food intake to some of the most popular lifestyle apps including Fitbit, MyFitnessPal, Weight Watchers, and Apple Health. Once the scale is connected to the app and user preferences are set, nutritional values of food items can be effectually calculated according to weight and smarter fitness programs can be designed.
IoT and Smoke/Gas Detection
Every year more than 30,000 Americans fall ill due to accidental carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning. CO is released into the air every time gasoline, wood, natural gas, propane, charcoal or oil is burnt. Due to it being odorless and tasteless, a high concentration of CO is often not detected until it is too late. But smart detectors, such as the First Alert Onelink and the Nest Protect can detect and alert users of dangerous conditions. When the device (regardless of the model) detects increase CO levels in the air, it sounds a loud alarm, alerting the inhabitants of the imminent danger. The detector can also be linked to a smartphone via an innovative app that can alert the homeowner of a gas leak even when he isn’t at home.
There is no way to predict to what extent IoT will revolutionize the home but the future seems to be exceedingly bright. Judging by current trends and a prediction by Intel that the global net-worth of IoT will reach $6.2 trillion by 2025, the world is undoubtedly set to become more closely connected than ever before.
Guest Post by Lucy Mason