The best tech will help you run a better business, but there’s no reason you should leave your love of gadgets at the office. The best smart home tech gadgets — ones that connect to wifi, learn your habits and can be controlled remotely by an app — provide you with convenience, security, comfort and entertainment.
Here’s a rundown of our favourite smart home gadgets:
1. Nest Products
Nest, a smart home company, has three automation products: a thermostat, smoke detector and CO alarm, and camera. The smart thermostat learns your temperature preferences and automatically programs itself, taking into account the season and time of day.
You’ll save money on your heating and cooling bills, and be toasty warm when you get out of bed in the morning (because Nest knows when you wake up). If you leave the house and forget to turn down the heat, you can do it remotely from the Nest app.
The Nest camera connects to your phone, allowing you to remotely check up on your house when you’re at work, out of town or just down the street. It can be a baby monitor or a pet sitter. It has a 130-degree wide angle view and lets you zoom in (great for checking in your teenager’s rowdy party).
Instead of just beeping really loud, the Nest smoke and CO alarm tells you exactly what’s wrong. It gives you a friendly warning, using a human voice, that there’s a bit of smoke in the kitchen (probably from that toast you just burned). It lasts for 10 years and regularly tests itself. The best part? You can silence a false alarm directly from your phone.
2. Sonos Audio System
A smart speaker system, Sonos can be controlled using your phone using a single app. You can turn music on in your whole house or just your kitchen using wireless speakers, easily control volume, and choose songs and playlists. You can stream music using Apple, Spotify, Google Play Music, SiriusXM and plenty more. The sound quality is stellar and the speakers themselves are sleek and subtle.
There’s also an entire wireless home theatre system.
3. Apple AirPort Time Capsule
Backup your data and connect to wifi at the same time. We love this gadget because it can backup multiple computers on the same wireless network, meaning you can protect files on both your home desktop and your work laptop. It all happens automatically, too.
The time capsule also acts as a wi-fi base station, giving you internet speeds that are three times faster than typical wi-fi. At just four square inches, it’s barely noticeable on top of your desk or on a shelf. Once the time capsule is set up, you can manage it directly from your computer, tablet or iPhone.
4. Philips Hue Lightbulbs
You can control the colour, brightness and timing of these light bulbs directly from an app on your phone. It’s a bit of a niche product, but we think it’s convenient — and really fun — especially if you’re committed to having a smart home. Philips Hue bulbs are now compatible with Apple HomeKit, meaning you can control the colour of the lights just by talking to Siri. If you go on vacation and forget to leave some lights on, these bulbs have you covered.
5. Robot Vacuums
Just kidding. These are often terrible and usually expensive. Not everything in your home needs to be smart technology. Bust out a Dyson and burn some calories.
Topics: To consider
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