The Beginner's Guide to Getting Started with IoT in 2018
More and more devices connect with the internet but where should you start with the IoT?
Here is a beginner’s guide to help you understand what IoT means.
2017 saw the rise of smart home assistants, home streaming devices, and cloud-based gadgets. And Gartner predicts 20.4 billion connected “things” will be in use by 2020.
Did you get a few devices for Christmas? Or would you like to invest in your smart home this year? The Barclays Mortgages Digital Homes Report found 28% of home buyers prefer a smart home.
With so much choice, where should you start with the IoT in 2018? Read our beginner’s guide to the best gadgets for starting your smart home.
Start Small with Smart Sockets
Not ready to swap your existing gadgets for smart alternatives? Plug them into a smart socket and get the best of both worlds.
Try the Zuli Smartplug. Connect your gadgets to it and schedule them to turn off and on at specified times. You won’t need to invest in smart lightbulbs because it lets you dim existing lamps from your phone.
The Smartplug works with Bluetooth, freeing up bandwidth on your home Wi-Fi network. It also eliminates security concerns about using Wi-Fi.
It’s currently only iOS compatible, but Android compatibility is on the way. The only feature it’s missing is remote access. But when you’re starting your smart home, a smart plug is still a good investment.
Change the Way You Start Your Day
Smart sockets convert your traditional gadgets into smart ones. Sometimes the smart gadget is the superior choice.
Take coffee makers. You could use your smart socket to schedule your coffee maker to brew at a given time.
Take the BrewGenie smart coffee maker, for instance. You’re not restricted to the scheduled start times of a smart socket. Instead, start the brewing process remotely from your bed. The BrewGenie monitors your coffee usage and prompts you when you’re running out.
More of a tea drinker? Try the AppKettle instead. Set it boiling while you’re in the shower, so your morning tea is ready when you reach the kitchen. Set different temperatures to suit herbal or fruit tea. It’ll maintain its temperature for 30 minutes to cut down reboiling, saving you energy.
Try Automating the Chores You Hate
You’ve got hot drinks on command and gadgets you can control from your smartphone. Why not turn smart home technology to your advantage and automate the chores you hate?
Let’s start with vacuuming.
Try the Eufy Robot Vacuum RoboVac 11, with a lighter price tag than more well-known models. Choose a range of cleaning modes, such as scheduled, single room clean, or maximum clean. It gives good suction, with an extra filter for pet hair. It’s quiet enough that it won’t disturb you while you’re watching TV.
How about gardening?
Much like a robot vacuum picking up dirt in your home, a robot lawnmower cuts the grass in your garden. Check out the Worx Landroid to schedule your mowing. This battery powered lawnmower can even handle inclines of up to 20°. It’ll return back to its charging station if the weather takes a turn for the worst.
The Landroid S even trims the lawn edges, so you don’t have to.
Finally, Explore Smart Security
Install peace of mind at your front door with a smart doorbell like the SkyBell.
It offers the usual features, such as motion sensors and a 1080p camera. View your doorstep through your smartphone with the companion app.
So why start with the SkyBell? Its coating prevents rust, and it contains a battery to keep the SkyBell working even if the power goes out. You also get free cloud storage for your videos.
Best of all, it works in temperatures between -40°F and 149°F.
A Word of Caution
Each device runs on an operating protocol, such as Wi-Fi, ZigBee, or Bluetooth. Not all of them are compatible with each other. Thankfully, many manufacturers are now working together to overcome these problems.
Before you pick up a gadget, check its compatibility with your existing operating system (i.e., Amazon, Google, Apple) first. Then, check their integrations with other manufacturers.
Finally, don’t feel you need to use the companion app for each individual gadget. Save space on your smartphone and use a universal remote like SURE Universal.
Over to you – what’s on your IoT wish list for 2018?