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Smart Home Automation: Should You Buy the Devices First, or Get a Whole System?

by Ann Ferguson

Smart home automation is full of flashy devices and futuristic technology, so you might be tempted to go out and find the shiniest smart devices you see. But don't!

You can't piece together a smart home system and expect everything to run smoothly — it's just too hard! Don't worry; we'll walk you through what you need to do to get started on your smart automation journey!

The Disadvantages of Going Gadget by Gadget

Woman trying to connect wireless security camera

There are a few reasons why you shouldn't just go out and start buying smart devices willy-nilly. For one, it's tough to find compatible devices. Not all devices use the same platform or even speak the same language, so unless you do your research, you might end up with a bunch of expensive paperweights.

It's also tough to know how all your devices will work together. Unless you're an expert in home automation (or willing to become one), getting everything set up correctly will be difficult. Even then, there's no guarantee that your devices will play nice together — you might find yourself constantly troubleshooting issues.

The Benefits of Whole Home Automation

Man using smart home system with phone

So, if gadget-by-gadget is no good, then what? You need a smart home system — whole house automation that takes care of everything from your thermostat to lights to security. And the benefits of smart systems far outweigh the idea of trying to sort everything out by the device.

  • Better Efficiency: Each device connected to the system speaks the same language and runs more efficiently.
  • Real-Time Monitoring: Keep track of all your connected devices, including smart lights, smart thermostats, smart security systems, and smart locks.
  • Fine-Tune Comfort: Set a light, thermostat, and shade schedule to fit your comfort, set up your music however you want, and more.
  • Peace of Mind: Get real-time alerts for break-ins, unauthorized movement, and whenever a device needs your attention.
  • Save Energy: Reduce energy waste by fine-tuning your smart thermostat, timing your smart shades, and adjusting your lights.

Why should you rely on custom integrators?

As we said before, buying smart devices piece by piece means dealing with multiple interfaces that might not communicate with each other. But even with whole house automation, those interfaces can be tricky. Luckily, that's what smart custom integrators are for — they know how to design and install a system that fits your specific needs while configuring it to one interface.

Custom integrators see what you want to achieve in your home, look at what's possible in your current layout, and then plan your whole system. They even think ahead for future changes so that your equipment is easy to update and help configure for new software changes and updates. And what's even better is that they know how to secure each device to protect your information.

What do you want your home to do?

Happy woman controlling home with smart device

Now that you know what your custom integrator can do, it's time to think about what you want your smart home to look like. What do you want your smart home to accomplish for you?

  • Do you want to keep an eye on things with a security system that sends camera feeds directly to your phone?
  • Do you want motion sensors on your windows and doors to know if someone comes in when you're not home?
  • Do you want your porch lights to turn on right before you pull into the driveway?
  • Do you want to unlock the front door with just your smartwatch?

There is so much you can do with smart automation; the possibilities seem endless. So, be sure to keep in mind the daily actions in your house, like turning off the lights (again) before turning in or getting packages while you're away at work. Then talk to your integrator about ways you can automate the process. You'll be surprised at what's possible!

Network Requirements

Woman trying to connect smart devices to network

Before we wrap things up, let's briefly touch on the network requirements for whole home automation. And every smart home automation system is different; some work on Wi-Fi, Z-Wave, Zigbee, or Bluetooth. But as for Wi-Fi, you'll need a separate dedicated network to allow your devices to communicate with each other without interference.

As for your internet speed, you'll need to consider adding 5 Mbps to your internet plan for every ten smart devices, plus another five if you're installing cameras.

But don't worry about all the requirements just yet — your integrator will handle all your network requirements!

Upgrade Today

So, there you have it! We hope this has convinced you to ditch the gadgets and go for whole home automation instead. It might seem a lot initially, but we promise it'll be worth it in the end! And at Louisa's Electronics, we'll help you with every step!

Give us a call today to set up your consultation appointment, and we'll help you get started!