Smart lights and smart speakers aren’t the only ways to connect the home to your voice and the web, as Laser dabbles with a few more ideas.
Technology is shaping our lives in so many ways, but while many of us turn to our phones as to where much of the change is, they might want to turn to aspects of their home for more. As we start to use and rely both phones and smart assistants more often, it makes sense that aspects of our home can be touched by these changes, too.
It’s gradually happening, though you mightn’t be aware of how or why.
In home protection, for instance, security cameras can help us stay informed, shining a light on intruders, and whether someone is coming a knocking. You might have smart lights that switch on when you’re not there to simulate being home, another form of passive security, which can be reinforced by the security cameras set up at the front or back.
Of course, your smart lights can do other things, and may be able to adapt and change their lighting over the course of a day, as well, giving your eyes some relief.
Your home is essentially one of the next places technology could change, and with more “smart appliances” on the way — that is to say, appliances that connect to the web in some form — and more ways to control parts of the home, it should come as no surprise that companies are exploring how this can happen.
In Australia, Laser’s Connect SmartHome brand appears to be doing just that, with a few gadgets you mightn’t be thinking about that could be smart, and one or two that it’s nice they can.
On the former, you’ll find smart power strips being added for around the $50 mark, providing plug boards in Australia that can be controlled remotely, with each port switching on and off via app.
Of particularly note is the single Smart WiFi Plug, which include power monitoring and energy saving features, which should be able to tell you what the device is drawing, and let you shut it off, a handy way to turn a “dumb” gadget — that’s a device that isn’t made to be smart or internet connected — into one that’s “smart”.
The same approach for power monitoring can come to water monitoring, with the $180 Connect Smart Wireless Water Controller, a solar panel equipped solution that plugs into your outdoors tap, and can turn control the timing of the water, or even turn it on to scheduled settings. If you regularly water the garden via sprinkler, this might be an option there, and it may even respond to weather patterns, allowing you to time when it’s sunny, but not necessarily if it’s raining.
Laser’s Connect brand is also adding something to the security side, with video doorbells, indoor and outdoor cameras (the latter of which offers a solar panel to keep it charged), and something we’ve seen few companies enter in Australia, with a door lock. Specifically, the $250 Connect Smart Deadbolt is a bit of a monster lock for a door, but supports passcodes, a fingerprint system, and the ability to generate temporary passcodes to people who might be coming, like your parents, or maybe not your parents at all.
Finally, its range of smart bulbs the company offers is being bolstered with some that go for a more decorative feel, complete with LED strips, WiFi controlled fairy lights, and bulbs made to show the filament inside, a smart Edison light bulb, essentially.
“With our second generation range we are expanding into areas that people may have not thought could be smart, or otherwise have previously come with a high price tag,” said Chris Lau, Managing Director of Laser and the Head of its Connect SmartHome brand.
“As consumers look for new and different ways to integrate smart technology into their lives, we remain committed to driving the category in delivering affordability and accessibility to the Australian smart home,” he said.
The range is available now in Australia exclusively through Harvey Norman.