Over the past few years, homes have started to incorporate more technology, smart appliances, and other features that help to improve efficiency, comfort, and control of the home. Newly construction homes are now being built with integrated WiFi access points during the build process, builders are including 2-stage variable speed furnaces, and digital thermostats such as the Lyric and Nest that can be controlled by your phone are quickly gaining popularity.
The growth of home automation and smart home technology is growing at a rapid rate. Many builders are now planning, designing, and implementing smart home functionality earlier in the building process. Selecting appliances that connect with each other, hardwiring and placing WiFi access points at optimal locations around the home, and constructing the house in a way that makes future changes and upgrades easy.
Below are the top 3 emerging technology trends gaining momentum in the current market that we believe will have a deep impact on the housing market and will be utilized in more homes to deliver a superior living experience for families:
1.) Voice Control & Home Automation
Voice control devices like Amazon’s Alexa, Google Home, and other voice assistants are becoming more popular and are seeing regular updates and improvements to become smarter and more user friendly. These devices allow you to communicate with virtual assistants to play music, set alarms, create checklists, purchase goods online, stay updated with the weather, receive important news, communicate with friends, and more.
As demand and adoption of voice devices and digital assistants grow, functionality, integrations, and development will continue to improve. While there is some home connectivity with voice currently, further improvements in AI will help make it easier to use and provide greater benefits. Some of the things voice assistants can help control include: turning lights on or off, adjust your home’s temperature, opening or closing shades, controlling your garage door, syncing with your home security system, integrating with your home speakers and entertainment system, operating other home appliances, and more.
One such tool that we utilize at Anderson Homes is Control4, which is a control system made specifically for home automation. Our technology partner, Global Sight and Sound, helps to setup and integrate these systems in every home that we build, with additional options and functionality depending on your needs and preferences. By implementing these features during the construction of your home, we’re able to hardwire critical components during the build process that help ensure reliable connectivity throughout the home. Implementing this technology during the construction process also gives you the power to determine the optimal placement of devices, ability to design the system around your needs, and freedom to easily add or upgrade features in the future.
2.) Home Security
Home security is another space that has seen a lot of recent innovation and improvements. Cameras are now able to capture and stream high quality footage of your home right to your phone and send notifications to your phone if any suspicious activity or motion is detected. One such device, the Ring Doorbell (which is included in every home built by Anderson Homes), will automatically notify you if someone is at your door, providing video and audio so that you can communicate remotely even if you’re not home. The company also provides a whole range of devices that connect with each other, including: outdoor and indoor security cameras, floodlight cams, exterior LED lighting, and security monitoring services.
3.) Remote Monitoring & Control
What’s better than having full control of your house when at home? Easy…having full control of your house even when you’re not at home! Having remote access to your home allows you to monitor, control, and view your home when you’re away. This is great for ensuring that your home is protected, alerting you of any problems or when someone arrives at the house. Making it easy to monitor your home when at work or on vacation, opening your door or garage remotely for package deliveries, or knowing that your kids got home safely from school.
One such feature that we include in our homes as standard is the ability to remote access your garage door. Liftmaster has a device and app called MyQ which connects to your garage door and home WiFi system. This allows you to open/close your garage door remotely (either in the app or by a voice with a digital assistant), get activity alerts when people arrive or leave, and allows you to control the lighting in your garage. Giving you peace of mind that your garage is always secure and having control even when you’re not at home.
Another device that we include in all our homes is the Lyric Round Thermostat, this integrates with your home’s WiFi system and uses an app on your phone that allows you to monitor and control your home’s temperature and humidity anywhere right from your phone. The lyric has a round glass face, motion-sense illumination, simple touch-screen, and a beautiful modern design that looks great in any home. The latest updates to the Lyric also enable it to connect with Apple HomeKit, Samsung Smart, and to your favorite voice assistants such as Google Assistant or Apple’s Siri, giving you improved smart home integration.
One unique feature with the Lyric Thermostat is Geofencing, this allows you to create a digital fence around your house so that your home’s temperature adjusts automatically based on your location (GPS from your phone). For instance, once on your way home from work, you can turn on air conditioning or heating once you’re a few miles way, ensuring that your home has reached a comfortable temperature once you get home. Same can be done when leaving for the day, triggering the Lyric into energy savings mode when you’re not home. Allowing you to create customized temperature setting profiles, reduce home energy costs, and improve the comfort of your home.
New improvements in technology and high demand from homeowners for better connectivity, ease of use, and comfort has sparked a wave of innovation and development in smart home devices and home automation applications. New hardware devices such as the Amazon Echo, Google Home, and Apple Homepod utilize voice controls, which are gradually improving functionality and expanding their range of apps that connect and interact with technology inside your home.
With recent improvements in camera quality, resolution, cost reduction, and high speed internet. Home security has seen a rise in recent years with products such as the Ring Doorbell that integrates with your home seamlessly, providing you with affordable high quality HD video that can be easily streamed to your smartphone.
More applications are also expanding their functionality outside the home by offering remote monitoring and control through your smartphone and WiFi connected homes. Some devices, such as the Lyric Thermostat are also utilizing GPS that triggers specific actions based on your location, further personalizing your home experience.
We’re excited for the future and look forward to seeing which devices and applications will have the largest impact on homeowners, new home construction, and will see mass market adoption in the next few years. We understand that a comfortable living experience is a top priority for many of our customers, so we’re always exploring new technology and innovation in the home market and how it can be used to benefit our customers.