Benefits And Drawbacks Of Having A Smart Home Setup

Written by: Justine Liew

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As technology advances, many available devices today are becoming equipped with automated and intelligent functions. That said, smart devices nowadays aren’t just limited to using voice commands. It is so much more than that. You can set rules and schedules for your smart devices to clean your floors or even to switch the lights on when you walk through the door. Additionally, smart devices can also act as a home security system to keep your home safe for when you’re out of town. 


Thanks to the individual devices’ interconnectivity, home automated systems have been gaining popularity, and you can pick out the devices you want to create a smart home with the sole purpose of making your life easier. 


And in this article, we will be discussing the advantages and disadvantages automated homes entail. 

What Is A Smart Home?

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A Smart Home (or Home Automation), like the name suggests, is precisely what it sounds like. It refers to a home setup where you can automatically control appliances, lights, and other devices around your home with a simple push of a button or voice command. Additionally, you can remotely control your devices from anywhere as long as you have a working internet connection. 


All devices in smart homes are interconnected through the internet or wireless networks, which allows you to control various functions such as security access, temperature, lighting, and more. 


One thing to note is that you may also come across terms such as ‘connected home’, but it is just another word for when your home technology works together in one system. 


Bonus: There are only three things that you will need to set up your very own smart home! A smart home hub, your smart device(s), and an internet connection. 

The Benefits

Many of us are living in the golden age of technological advancement, and smart homes are not an exception to that. You may also think that home automation is a stylish way to keep up with the latest technologies or an opportunity to show off. However, you can do so much more! 


Here are a few reasons why you should consider investing in smart homes.

1. Convenience


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First and foremost, smart homes allow you to manage all your household devices in one place. With just one app interface, you can automate and integrate the systems to meet any of your specific needs, even if it’s just something trivial like adjusting the thermostat. Furthermore, you can even set up rules or criteria through the app. An example of doing so would be to set controls for your sensors to detect motion so that the lights will automatically turn on when you walk into the room.  


Theoretically speaking, you just need to learn and understand the functions and how the app works. With that, you can tap into the endless possibilities the app provides to make your home a much more comfortable space for you and your family. Hence, the convenience of it plays a significant role in having a smart home setup. 


If you would like, perhaps you can get started with the Xiaomi Mi Home 4-in-1 Starter Pack

2. Energy Saving

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Smart homes have also been proven to be energy efficient. You can use it to pre-program or even control the lighting and climate of your home according to your usage. For instance, some smart thermostats allow you to have more precise control over your home’s heating and cooling as they learn your schedule and temperature preferences. Others may even have a context-dependent function that suggests the best setting for you to help save energy for your home. 


The settings provided by the smart home system can be adjusted by day or week, too, depending on your choice. Furthermore, incorporating a smart home can also alleviate some of your worries about spending too much money on electricity bills at the end of each month. Although the actual savings depend on the selected device and its automation capabilities, product manufacturers have estimated that home automation saves about 10-15% of your bills. How great is that!

If you’re keen to save on electricity bills and have automated lighting, you can look at our Xiaomi Yeelight collection here

Bonus: Smart home lighting systems also allow you to change the colour of the lights according to your preferences!



3. Maximising Home Security

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Safety is probably one of the most important factors people look for. Everyone wants to find comfort within the confines of their homes, especially from being away for a long day of work.


Having a smart home is not only convenient, but it can also help put your mind at ease while you’re away. It is relatively easy to whip out your device and remotely monitor your installed security cameras. Thanks to their always-on and connectivity capabilities and notifications, you would always be able to keep track of your home and for any potential robbery. 


Not forgetting that security cameras can also assist you with ensuring you didn’t leave the stove or any other electrical appliances on before you leave the house. With this, you can mitigate any risk of potential dangers to your home. 


If you’re keen on getting some security cameras, we at PCByte sells a range of them! You can also read further about what to look for in a surveillance camera here.  


The Drawbacks

Of course, everything comes with disadvantages, and smart homes are not an exception. 

1. Costly


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The first obvious drawback of having a smart home is the cost that comes with it. Unlike traditional homes, smart home technology requires a higher investment. Even though home automation has become more affordable, the initial cost to purchase and install can still add up to a hefty sum.


Depending on the quality of the devices and systems, there might not be any limit or estimation of how much they cost, and some people may be unwilling to spend this kind of money on home automation.

2. Privacy And Security Issues

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Another common factor that people are worried about would be the underlying security issues of smart homes. Whether you’re using voice assistance or setting up a set of criteria on your smart devices, you won’t necessarily know where the data registered through the app goes and if any third parties would use it.


Hence, privacy and security concerns may need to be considered when upgrading your home to a smart home. 


3. System Compatibility

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Not all systems and devices that you want to include in your smart home will be compatible with each other. For instance, your thermostats may use a particular app to manage the settings, different from your lights. 


Hence, to truly utilise and centralise all your devices, you should invest in a centralised platform to make it as seamless as possible. Although the cost might be higher in the initial stage, it would be worthwhile in the long run. 


4. Internet Outage Vulnerability

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Most smart devices are reliant on internet connectivity. So whenever there’s an internet outage, there’s a possibility that your systems will shut down momentarily. However, you can minimise the risk by ensuring your systems have some form of backup ready to keep them running while you work on fixing the internet connection. 

Conclusion

Having a smart home setup has its benefits and drawbacks, but it also all comes down to your preference. If you’re someone who is tech-savvy and prefers to have control over your household appliances all with the touch of your finger, then you should try this out. Alternatively, if you are someone who prefers to do things the traditional way, then go ahead! It may save you the hassle of installing the devices and any maintenance costs in the future. 


That said, we hope that this has helped you come to a sound decision after reading this!