Homes of the Future – Just How Smart Will They Be?

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( — May 1, 2015) Santa Fe, NM — Technology is advancing so quickly that it can be hard to keep up. Thanks to the progression of the Internet of Things, we already have door locks and smart phones that recognize us by our fingerprints, so what’s next? Homes that recognize our heartbeats? Well… actually, yes. More and more companies are investing in developing technologies that integrate both the digital and physical worlds within our homes, and as a result, what sounds like science fiction may become reality far sooner than you think.

Once only a possibility for the super-rich and tech-savvy (Bill Gates’ smart home is famously worth $123.54 million…) home automation and smart homes are becoming more and more popular amongst ‘normal’ people. Soon, our houses will be smart enough to differentiate between each person living in the home and be able to adjust to our personal preferences and individual needs based on fingerprints, body temperatures and even the pace of our heartbeats.

The first ‘smart’ tactics utilized in homes were determined by what homeowners deemed most important: managing energy consumption control and having remote access to your property. Worried you forgot to set the alarm while you’re away? Using your home security app, a few quick taps on your smart phone will program it up. Concerned you’re wasting energy and money on your heating bill? The smart scheduling capabilities of energy management will soon eradicate any egregious utility costs.

However, the success of these remote control systems has led scientists to up the ante, with the focus now being on personal preferences and convenience rather than security or utilities. Residents will wear small devices that connect to the home control system; these devices will probably look more like accessories than technological aids and will likely be worn around the wrist in order to monitor the user’s heartbeat.

The heartbeat monitoring system may also be used to determine someone’s identity, as there are many clear heartbeat variables. The technology of the wearable device doesn’t end there, though; it’s expected that they will also be able to gauge body temperature and ensure rooms are sufficiently heated or cooled. So what else can we expect from homes of the future? When thinking of futuristic homes, many people still conjure up images of robots who exist to service the house – is this vision now obsolete?

Maybe not. There are two different avenues regarding smart home technology: the first is the idea of all household appliances being connected via an internet system on one single platform, so they can work together in tandem; the other is the robotics avenue, which includes companies like iRobot, who currently manufacture devices like automated robot vacuum cleaners.

It’s too soon to say which method will be more popular in the long-term, but the widespread use of smart phones suggests that it will be web-connected methods of home control that are more prevalent – at least initially. So aside from controlling our home security and energy, what else can we expect from these super-smart homes of the future?

A typical day could kick off with a warm artificial sunrise from your lighting system as your thermostat warms up the rooms you occupy during your morning routine. You’ll walk into the kitchen and find that your coffee has already brewed, and you can enjoy it as you read the daily weather forecast – sent to you via push notifications, of course. Before you leave, your fridge will inform you which supplies you’re running low on and remind you to pick up ingredients on your way home from work. If you’re forgetful, it will text you to remind you nearer the time.

On leaving the house there’ll be no need to enter the garage – your car will have been self-driven out into the driveway for you and, if it’s cold, it will be pre-heated to the optimum temperature. As you pull away from your house, your home security system will ping into action: the doors will automatically lock and your household appliances will shift to energy-saving mode.

As you return home later that day, your home will use geo-fencing technology to track your imminent arrival and ensure you are appropriately welcomed back; the rooms will be heated, the garage door will open as you drive up and your favourite music will play as you walk through the front door.

Some of these measures may seem a little silly on first hearing. Do we really need our fridge to text us to let us know we’re out of orange juice? Perhaps not, but these smart appliances are becoming more and more widespread and they are, without a doubt, going to change the way our homes run.

Our homes will become like our cars, which already inform us if we haven’t shut the door properly, the water level is low or someone hasn’t buckled up. Extending this technology to our property as well as our transport is just the next logical step and, like cars, the ultimate vision of smart-home technology is a home that can run itself.


About the Author: Andrea enjoys spending her time writing about the issues closest to her heart, including home improvement, business and youth alcohol/drug addiction. Follow her on Twitter@