Today, everything has an app. You can walk down the aisle at Lowe’s and see on every end cap a device that has some internet connectivity and an app that allows you to control that device. The Iris lighting system, those psychedelic Hue light bulbs from Apple, NEST thermostats, door lock systems, cameras—all on a network you can manipulate from your device. The problem is in the difficulty of navigating from app to app to app in order to change your home systems.
For example, say you are coming home from the airport after a long trip. On the ride, you log into an app to adjust the thermostat. You log out of that, and log into another app to turn on some lights. Then you log out again, and log into another app to disarm the alarm system. After another log out, it takes another login to unlock the doors and put the garage door up. That is a ton of logging in and out!
An alternative to this army of individual apps is a master brain app— a single app that lets you change all of your home systems. “InControl” is an app that lets you adjust lights, power, thermostats and door locks all from one page. Some apps allow you to build themes that, with a single press of a button, does everything you want it to do in your home when you arrive from a trip. Shopping individually for apps that control one aspect of your home may look less expensive than buying one large control center app, but when you add them together, the price is usually about the same. The cost depends on how many home systems you want to control remotely. If you want to have access to multiple systems, buying a master brain app can save you money in the long run. The convenience of one login, one subscription and one management system to navigate also makes the master brain app a pretty good deal.
For more information about home automation systems, reach out to member Ray Rice, Digital Sight and Sound.