How SMART is your house?

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Smart technology is here to stay. If you're not sure what's meant by that, read on.

It doesn't seem very long ago that we all thought digital watches were pretty 'smart'. Now a smart watch can connect to the internet, communicate, take images as well as tell the time. It can also link to other 'smart' devices in your home and even your body to monitor your performance.

So far the main thrust of household smart technology has been heating/cooling. Many of the larger energy companies here in the UK offer their own 'smart' gadgets to allow their customers to remotely control their heating. There have been more advances and now you can get smart washing machines, smart security systems, smart garage doors and even a smart door lock.

What are the benefits of 'smart' technology?

Smart home systems such as Nest have been developed to save you money on your heating or cooling bills. Some of the systems have the added advantage of monitoring security through motion sensors whether you are in or out. You can also control the heating remotely. Switch it off if you forgot to, on before you get home or even leave it set so that the house doesn't freeze in a cold snap. Take a look at Nest or the equivalent system by Honeywell to see whether it would save you money.

Convenience is a major factor in choosing a smart product. I have just researched the latest smart washing machines and to be honest, they sound amazing. The Samsung available from John Lewis has so many different functions, you can switch it on remotely, it can be told what kind of dirt you have on your clothes and will select a cycle accordingly. It has 'gardening' and 'active kids' settings that would suit me. Mix that with dog hair, pasta sauce and chocolate and you have my exact wash pile. You don't even have to remember the powder every time - it can hold something like 18 doses. All you need is a minion to put the washing in the machine in the first place. Oh and empty all the pockets. That would be really clever. If only you could programme people too.

So far, so practical. But what about the fun side? Smart lighting and music that you can control to create ambiance?  Check out Hue from Philips on Amazon. I love the sound of this. Lights that can energise you, soothe you or even help you concentrate - all at the touch of an app. It's not cheap, but it gives you complete control over the colour and timing of your lighting.

Music - well of course, the Sonos system is my personal favourite. There are some others available now such as the Bose system. Take a look at Richersounds or Amazon for deals and use our secure international shipping to get your house smartened up.

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