We live in a society where technology is advancing at an exponential rate. It affects many aspects of our work lives, our sources of entertainment, and even the ways in which we connect with friends and family.
While there are certainly some cons to technological advancement, it is arguable that technology has, in many ways, made our lives much easier and hastened our ability to find and disseminate information in a timely manner.
As technology continues to evolve, more and more people are incorporating smart home devices into their everyday lives, as these tools can help connect different features of the home and conveniently provide opportunities for customization and personalization of the unit.
Why Should I Bother with Smart Equipment?
We’ve been getting along without sophisticated smart equipment for quite some time—so, why should we start using it now? Smart home equipment offers a variety of benefits aside from falling in alignment with current trends.
For one thing, investing in smart equipment can actually save you money in the long run. For example, utilizing a smart thermostat can help control the climate of your place and prevent you from coming home to a unit that is too hot or too cold. Don’t pay for heat or air when you aren’t even at home! Additionally, investing in a smart irrigation system can help you keep your yard properly hydrated with the right amount of water so that you won’t have to use any more water than what is needed. [1-2]
Additionally, smart home features can also help keep your family safe. Devices like smart video doorbells include cameras to see who is outside your place. These cameras can even pick up when you’ve received a package, and you may even be able to catch a porch pirate. [1-2]
Aside from these very practical reasons, many people enjoy the use of smart equipment to enhance their sources of entertainment. For example, smart speakers can project music or podcasts throughout the home by way of simple voice activation. Smart devices can also be convenient for organizing several components of the home (such as the lighting and the speakers) from one central hub or from a smartphone. 
Do I Need a Hub?
If you plan to invest in a variety of smart home technologies, you may want to first consider investing in a “hub” that is compatible with the types of devices you plan to incorporate throughout your home. While you do not necessarily need a hub, it can help keep your smart features organized and provide a central means for controlling the different devices. 
There are a variety of hubs available, and the number of brands is increasing as smart products become more popular. If you already have several products from a particular brand, such as Apple or Google, you may want to consider investing in the hub that links best with these devices. Be careful to ensure that the hub you choose will be compatible with the devices you already have or plan to purchase. 
At the end of the day, you do not absolutely need a hub to incorporate smart features into your home; however, you’ll get the best use of these devices if you at least have a strong Internet connection that reaches throughout the house. Those looking to incorporate just one or two smart home products may want to start by purchasing a strong router. 
7 Ways to Make Your Home “Smart”
There are a variety of ways to add smart features to your home. You can pick and choose which features are most important to you or even try to integrate as many smart products as possible, depending on your interest. Below are 7 products that could be incorporated to improve the “intelligence” of your place:
1) Smart lights— Install a smart lighting system or a smart plug (if you tend to use a lot of lamps) to easily turn your lights on or off and even control the dimness/brightness of each room. 
2) Smart doorbell cameras– A doorbell camera can help you to know who is there before you answer. You may also want to consider home camera systems so you can keep an eye on your children and your pets when you aren’t around. 
3) Smart speakers—Throw the party of the year with smart-controlled speakers, which can be installed in different rooms throughout the home to provide surround-sound quality. Some smart speakers are also able to be used as hubs to connect to your other devices. 
4) Smart thermostats—Never worry about coming in to a stuffy home in the middle of the summer! Smart thermostats are great for controlling the temperature of your place, even when you aren’t actively in it, which is great for conserving energy and saving money on your bills. [1-2]
5) Smart robot vacuums—You can now vacuum your home without even being present with programmable smart robot vacuums. These devices can cover both carpeted and wood flooring to help remove unwanted dust and particles from your home. 
6) Smart smoke detectors—Investing in smart smoke and carbon monoxide detectors can help save you and your family members’ lives in case of an emergency. Some of these products can be linked to your smartphone so that you can receive alerts when you aren’t at home. 
7) Smart irrigation systems—These systems are perfect for taking care of your lawn without using too much water, which can save you time and money. 
Technology continues to change the way we live and work in the world. While we do not necessarily need to have homes equipped with smart devices, they can certainly make daily tasks easier and more enjoyable.
Some of these product types are more affordable than others, but in the end, many of them can help save you money on your monthly bills! Be sure to do your research by checking to see if you have a strong router and/or the appropriate hub you need to connect any devices you plan to purchase!