Every gadget lover enjoys the idea of ‘smart’ technologies that make our lives simpler than ever before. Many of us have already installed a lot of smart home gadgets in our properties that help us to illuminate parts of the house to see where we’re going and to deter thieves, while smart heating has also been incredibly popular with owners switching on the central heating when they leave work so they arrive home to a warm house.
As technologies continue to evolve a lot of these technologies can be incorporated into other areas of our lives, so now you’ve heard about the smart home it’s time to learn about the ‘smart workplace.’ When you think about it, a lot of smart home systems can be incorporated into offices and warehouses that will improve the working conditions and security, and even save the business money in the long-term.
What is a smart home – and a smart workplace?
A smart home is another of those phrases that has come along in recent years that you either fully understand or have no idea about. If you fall into the latter category and you’re asking yourself and those around you just what is a smart home then we’ll try and clear things up for you.
Put simply, a smart home is a property filled with a number of electronic devices including lighting and heating that are connected to and controlled by mobile devices like smartphones and tablet computers.
To give you an example of how smart home systems work you could be sat on your living room sofa watching television when you decide that it’s a little too dark to see and you need to turn the lights on. Rather than moving from your comfortable spot on the sofa (which the dog is waiting to jump into), you can open an app on your smartphone that enables you to switch the lights on. In the case of the Philips Hue wireless lighting system you can even control individual lights and their colour if you wish.
From a business perspective there are plenty of opportunities for you to incorporate these smart systems into the workplace. One prime example is to ensure that the heating is set perfectly for when you arrive in the morning. If your office is notoriously chilly first thing, rather than having it on for hours and wasting energy you could set the heating to come on using an app when you leave your home in the morning so that it’s on by the time you and your staff start to arrive.
You could even do the same with your lights so that you’re not scrambling around for the switch in the dark, and this can also help to deter thieves who assume that someone is in because the lights are on.
One of the most popular smart home, and smart workplace technologies, is smart lighting. These systems as we have already touched upon can help to illuminate your property while you’re out to deter thieves and to ensure that you have the perfect light setup for watching movies or relaxing at home in an evening.
In the workplace, smart lighting can help you to save hundreds of pounds every year on your energy bills. There are countless offices that have large automatic lights that are either on or off, some aren’t sufficient enough to light all areas while others are too bright and can make seeing a screen difficult.
With smart lighting in place you could adjust which lights are on and off at certain times, dimming certain bulbs and brightening others to individual staff preferences.
With systems like the Philips Hue you can adjust the lights making the perfect environment for a house party with changing colours and dimmer switches all controlled remotely. This also means that you can be outside on a summer’s evening and you can switch the lights on inside the property when it starts to go dark so you can stay out longer and guests can find their way to the buffet!
Smart security systems
One of the biggest advantages to smart home technology, however, is in security. The expanding range of smart security systems enables home and business owners to control CCTV cameras, set alarms and even see who is knocking on the door – when you’re not there!
With an office that has its own reception area or a communal foyer, guests may ring a doorbell that connects with your office area and with the help of systems like the Ring video doorbell you can look on your smartphone to see who it is so that the appropriate staff members can go and greet them.
This also has significant security benefits in the sense that you can monitor who is on and around the premises at all times with security cameras synced to various mobile devices that can then be shown to authorities if there is a break-in or any damage, and there are also a range of great new motion sensors that have many of the same features with alerts sent to mobile devices out of hours.
To find out more about our range of smart home systems for your home or workplace, and our extensive range of business technology, take a look around the BT Business Direct online store today.