The title is only a bit facetious, but there are many, many home automation options in the market. You only need to look in Home Depot, Best Buy, and Amazon to find a wide range of smart home devices from a plethora of vendors, with most of them tying into the platform umbrellas of the world’s largest tech companies.
So, what’s wrong with that? Nothing, many of those devices are brilliant products. But what happens when you try to put together a complete smart home using these devices and platforms? It can get surprisingly complicated. Think about your laptop or desktop computer. You probably know how to maintain it and keep it updated and running relatively smoothly. What if you had a whole department full of them to manage? That's what IT departments or outside services tend to do, so employees don't have to spend time worrying about the technology they use.
The concept is the same for a smart home. If you want to be your own integrator, you may be happy with DIY solutions. If you need a Chicago, IL smart home that just works – so you don’t have to be the IT department – you might consider an experienced home automation company like Barrett’s Technology Solutions. Explore why below!
While many smart devices work over wireless network technologies, wiring and cabling are still necessary for optimal connectivity in many homes, especially larger properties. A couple of examples: Smart security cameras may be installed in locations around the perimeter of a house. Cameras need connectivity and power. A single ethernet cable solution can provide both and is far better than a camera battery that needs to be recharged or replaced and offers a less stable wireless connection. Another example is wireless access points, which can provide fast wireless connection performance throughout your property but should be connected by wiring back to the router. And there’s more, like lighting control system components and distributed audio-video systems. A well-integrated smart home requires the right foundation of wiring and cabling for reliable connections.
While not all professional smart home solutions require an internet connection all the time, the reality is that any connectivity like remote control from a smartphone requires internet access. The source of most streaming entertainment is internet-based, and the connection is required for any work or education. All this is to say that network connectivity - within the home and to the internet – is a foundational element of any smart home. A professional smart home company can assess problem connectivity areas, design a network that provides strong coverage everywhere, fix areas where certain wireless signals don't travel well, and otherwise install the network foundation that will serve all the connected devices in your home. Because you don't want to be the network IT person at home, right?
As we noted earlier, not all smart devices work wirelessly. While many smart lighting platforms have wireless keypad controls, behind them are controller systems wired to the lighting loads they manage. Lighting control systems like Lutron can have one button on a keypad set many lights across rooms and outdoors to a pre-programmed setting. To do that well, you need a smart, wired control system and reliable wireless keypad connections. DIY solutions tend to rely on smart connected bulbs and switches, but setting up more sophisticated lighting scenes spanning several areas can get complex or is simply unreliable. Do you want your smart lighting to respond instantly like a regular light switch? That’s the difference between a system like Lutron and a DIY solution.
These are but three reasons why it pays to use a smart home company to automate your Chicago home. For many more, reach out to Barrett’s Technology Solutions at (630) 898-2850 or contact us here to get started. We look forward to working with you!
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