Home Automation for Beginners

home automation for beginnersOver the last few months we highlighted Home Automation companies that were on the high end side. While these system are what we all dream of, almost all of us can’t afford them. However, there is no reason that we can’t have a fully functional home automation system without breaking the bank. When we read an article at Electronic House entitled Home Automation FAQs for Beginners we thought it would be a good idea to talk a bit about Home Automation for beginners.

Today’s Show:

News:

Other:

Home Automation for Beginners

Over the last few months we highlighted Home Automation companies that were on the high end side. While these system are what we all dream of, almost all of us can’t afford them. However, there is no reason that we can’t have a fully functional home automation system without breaking the bank. When we read an article at Electronic House entitled Home Automation FAQs for Beginners we thought it would be a good idea to talk a bit about Home Automation for beginners.

According to the author, Julie Jacobson the most popular systems installed in homes are:

* Security Systems – Ara built out a capable system after his home got broken into. Motion Sensors, Lights, Macros, Whole House Audio are all components of the system. The only limitation is that the system is not monitored. However, If someone breaks in an email and text message is sent to Ara’s cell phone. Works great unless you are sleeping or not next to a cell phone. The alarm is Ara’s voice telling the intruder that he is caught on video and the police have been notified. If the break in happens at night all the lights in the house get turned on as well.

* Whole House Music – You can use Sonos, Airport Express and others for a low cost approach. You will need some way to tie them into your home automation system. Ara’s home automation system can communicate with his Mac via Macros. Or as long as you use iTunes, you can use your iPhone’s Remote App to send audio anywhere you have a remote speaker. Apple’s new Airplay system will allow speaker manufacturers to sell speakers that can communicate with Apple’s Airplay protocol. The will make it trivial for people to build ad hoc whole house audio.

* Lighting Controls – No more will you have to re-program your timers for daylight savings!

* Energy Management – Having lights that turn off after a pre-defined interval will save you money, so will programming thermostat!

Cost

The systems we highlighted previously are quite expensive! However, you can get started for a less than $500 and gradually work your way up. The important thing here is you have to get started. Ara’s is into it for about $2500 and that includes the remote speakers for the whole house audio. The plans Ara has to finish it out will bring the final cost up to about $3000 when its all said and done

Examples of Home Automation Use

From the article:

* Press the “Vacation” button on the keypad and the system automatically sets back the thermostat, arms the security system, and turns the lights on and off at random to simulate a lived-in look.

* When a delivery man rings the door bell, your cell phone lights up with his picture and opens up a two-way conversation. Trust the guy? Unlock the door remotely and lock it up after he leaves.

* Touch the “Baseball” button on your iPad and the TV automatically displays the current games, maybe the scores, and maybe even your fantasy team stats.

Wrapping Up

The key here is that you have to start someplace. Start simple with a few lights a motion sensor and a thermostat. Build from there. Its our opinion that you should also have a PC to run your system. This is where the real power comes. You can build elaborate macros, triggers, and scenes.


HT Guys

HTGuys.com

Smart Home

The C By GE Smart LED Bulbs Work Seamlessly With Google Home

The Smart Light Starter Kit contains a smart lightbulb and a Google Home Mini. For those seeking to try out smart lights in their home, it's a great option and is currently on sale for just $35 through Google.
Home Theater

These awesome A/V receivers will swarm you with surround sound at any budget

There is no one-size-fits-all approach to shopping for a receiver, so we assembled our favorites for 2018, at multiple price points and all loaded with features, from Dolby Atmos to 4K HDR, and much more.
Product Review

Step aside, Sonos: Riva's Concert is the best smart speaker you can buy

The Riva Concert series speaker is a fantastic, small-profile smart speaker with Alexa integration, truly excellent sound, and great looks, making it the perfect addition to your kitchen, living room, or bedroom.
Smart Home

Got an Emerson thermostat? 135,000 of them are being recalled due to fire risk

Most recalls are relatively benign but if you own an Emerson-branded thermostat, we encourage you to check your model number because the company has alerted consumers to the potential of the device starting a fire.
Podcasts

TWB Podcast: iPhone price cut rumor; smart home hack; delivery robot

Apple lawsuits and iPhone price drops; Smart Home Devices hacked remotely; Autonomous Delivery Robots may be closer to reality.
Podcasts

TWB Podcast: CES preview; LG 8K television; Home assistant takeover

CES Preview and Digital Trends coverage; LG 88" 8K television; Home assistants will be taking over everything; the strange tech of CES.
Movies & TV

Between the Streams: A brutal ‘Sicario 2’ trailer, 10 more years of Star Wars

It's lightsabers, polka kings, and sequels galore this week on Between the Streams, as we look at a wide variety of new content hitting screens, including everything from a Bright sequel to Star Wars Episode IX news.
Podcasts

Trends With Benefits podcast: Our favorite tech from CES 2018

It's our annual episode from CES! We've seen a lot of great tech this year, and have been surprised by a few announcements as well, so we discuss our favorite products and announcements this year.
Podcasts

TWB Podcast: Best TVs of CES; emerging tech; Amazon/Apple 2nd HQ; Falcon X

We'll cover the Best TVs of CES, some of more fringe emerging tech, Amazon and Apple's 2nd Headquarter statuses and the Falcon X Heavy rocket may finally be launching.
Movies & TV

Between the Streams: Apple and Kristen Wiig, ‘Solo’ synopsis, Black Widow movie?

This week on Between the Streams: A comedy series with Kristin Wiig and Reese Witherspoon from Apple, a Catch 22 miniseries from George Clooney, rumors of a Spider-Man and Venom meet-up, a Black Widow stand-alone film, and much more.
Podcasts

TWB Podcast: iPhone X discontinued?, Galaxy S9 first look, 50 Cent’s bitcoins

Apple iPhone X discontinued: After a week of rumors, it seems that Apple may indeed be discontinuing the current version of the iPhone X. KGI Securities predicts that this will occur later this year, when potential replacements for the X…
Podcasts

TWB Podcast: Amazon Echo vs. Google Home vs. Apple HomePod, Galaxy X

With the three big names in Home Assistants all taking aim at each other, we break down the Amazon Echo, Google Home, and Apple HomePod. Samsung may be debuting a foldable phone this year and we'll recap some highlights from Outdoor…
Movies & TV

Between the Streams: CBS’ desperate ‘Murphy Brown’ revival, Super Bowl trailers

This week on Between the Streams, we'll be discussing all the weird new sitcom reboots (and how desperate they are), Netflix's new series Altered Carbon, all the new trailers we expect to see during the Super Bowl, and so much more.
Podcasts

TWB Podcast: SpaceX triumph, Spotify vs. Apple Music, Apple Watch health

After the success of the Falcon launch, what's next for SpaceX and Tesla? Spotify is the kind of streaming music, but Apple Music is hot on the trail. The Apple Watch may soon provide your doctor with valuable information.