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Smart plugs why invest?
In our latest blog, we will explore the home and help you come to a better understanding of smart home options that are currently available to you. We will look into ways for you to integrate home automation into your everyday routines and guide you with a room by room set up. So we will break down your home room by room gadget by gadget and look at what you can install, and how to make your home that bit smarter.
Smart automation gives homeowners control over everything from home security to energy use. But with so many products on the market transforming your home to becoming entirely automated can not only be a huge cost but a little overwhelming as well.
This is where the smart plugs come in as a great compromise and a money-saving way of making your home that bit smarter. This will be the first gadget that we will be exploring in our blog.
Now let’s look at the functions of the smart plug they are easy to use and set there is no need for a hub or any wiring they are literally an adaptor for the socket for your appliance. They can function independently, and they are easily integrated into any home with minimal fuss. The smart plug connects to an app on your smartphone/tablet via Wi-Fi allowing you to control whatever appliance is connected to that plug, one connects smart plugs allow users to set scenes in the ITTT (if this then that) app.
Let’s take a look at how a smart plug could fit into your everyday life.
First, we will start in the Kitchen. All those who own homes will understand the desire to continually improve our space, and since the kitchen is where we tend to spend most of our time why not start there?
Smart kitchen appliances and technology has been advancing rapidly so why not get smart in your kitchen? With using smart sockets, you can make the appliances that you may already own smart at a fraction of the cost.t
Because mornings would be so much better if you could say “Alexa make my coffee” well… now, this really is a dream come true! How about making a cup of coffee without leaving your bed? For many of us to function to our full potential we need coffee and plenty of it. So, a coffee maker all be it a luxury item, I can assure you once you get one it hard to live without it. Well now, this is where you can make your home a bit smarter with adding a smart plug you will transform your normal coffee machine into a smart one. with a simple voice command to your google home or Alexa, your coffee machine will be able to turn itself on making that fresh cup of coffee for when you get out of bed.
Stuff it, set it and forget it. So, a smart slow cooker will set you back a good £200 which we don’t always have just laying around. But can you put a price on the convenience of have dinner ready when you get home from work? I guess you can and at just £12.99 for a smart plug you can have your very own smart slow cooker... so popping all your ingredients for your favourite meal into the slow cooker in the morning then set the time for it to come on so when you come home you are greeted with a tasty home-cooked meal has never been so easy. No worry and no fuss…
Now on to the lounge, the possibilities are endless here. As you are quickly discovering the smart plug can be used in the vast majority of appliances. Let us start with the television one of the main energy users when in stand by and often this is an appliance that the plug is hidden or difficult to get to, if you utilise a smart plug for your tv you will be able to turn it off completely saving those wasted pennies in electricity.
In the evening or while watching a movie, it can be much cosier with a lamp on rather than the main lights. By using a smart plug and a smart home assistant such as Alexa, you can turn the lamp on/off with a voice command or mobile app. Also, you could think about replacing the bulb in your lamp and having some mood lighting using a hue colour changing dimmable bulb.
Are you lucky enough to have some aquatic life in your home? Well, the lights in your fish tank can illuminate the colours of your fish and regulate the fish’s eating and sleeping patterns. A smart plug can be used to automatically turn off the lights at night and on in the morning, simulating their natural environment.
Clambering under the Christmas tree to turn the lights on and off each day can be a pain. Automating your festive lights with smart plugs offers the most convenient solution. You could even use an IFTTT applet to turn off your Christmas lights when you leave the house, using the location data from your phone. And when Christmas is over, you’ll easily be able to make use of your smart plugs elsewhere in the home.
Let's explore the uses of a smart plug in the bedroom what better way to start than with the mornings, I think it's safe to say we have all be guilty of sleeping through an alarm some of us more than others! Well, why not use a smart plug to turn your bedside light on automatically when your alarm goes off? That combination might help you wake up easier.
Chaotic mornings are a normality in many households. Instead of worrying that you of your partner may have left the straighteners on (again), check the app and if you have no worries you are able to turn them off remotely. You can also use a smart plug to turn the straighteners on each weekday morning at a particular time, so they are ready for use.
In the winter or on cooler nights for some of us having a warm cosy bed is essential and this can be achieved with an electric blanket. It’s doubly important if you’re older and feel the cold more than you used to, or if you live in a cooler climate. Electric blankets are clearly not the most eco-friendly devices, which is why it’s sensible to use a smart plug. With a timer or timed app program, you can instruct the electric blanket to switch on and heat the bed. Similarly, you can time the blanket to switch off and on at a certain time for the best night’s sleep possible.
On a warm summer evening, you may require an air conditioning unit or a fan, but have you ever gone to bed with the fan on only to wake a few hours later freezing cold? Using a smart plug you could use the schedule function you can set the fan to come on every couple of hours to suit you, giving the most comfortable night sleep.
So, as you can see the uses for a smart plug are endless. If you think of a device that may work with your plug, you can bet your bottom dollar that it probably will. So how about treating yourself to one today and see what you can make smart in your home.
P.s some other ideas!
Take back control….. One for the Parents.
The modern family home often features a child’s bedroom completed wit tv and games consoles. Are you tired of the endless battles with your children trying to get them to complete homework or play outside? And constantly trying to enforce rules on gaming and tv time? Well if you want to be even less popular in your home you can utilise a smart plug here. Simply placed between the appliance and power outlets the time to turn off devices when required. Just remember to ask them to save their game first! Thank us later and remember as the saying goes not all superheroes wear capes!
One for the men. Keep your space warm in winter, your man cave den or “office” may get quite cold in the winter months this is especially true f your chill-out space is outside such as a shed or a garage, what you need is a way to heat it up before you get there? Why not plug in an electric radiator to your smart plug and remotely activate it to warm your room in advance? Making sure the radiator isn’t turned up too high and not left alone for too long you will have a nice warm space to return home to.
Switch off everything when you sleep. Some of the biggest standby power eaters are:
Laptops/ desktop computers
Heaters and air conditioning units
TVs DVD players game consoles
Microwaves washing machines dishwashers
Optimise the use of your smart plug but setting a schedule to remotely turn off all these devises. You will save money on your energy.
IFTTT - IFTTT is a free platform that lets you connect different apps, services, devices, and use them together in ‘Applets.’ Through Applets, you’re able to do new things that wouldn’t be possible otherwise. For example, you could have an Applet that turns on your smart plug at set times.
Virtual Assistants - Most smart plugs are compatible with virtual assistants which can give you hands-free voice control. For example, if you pair your smart plug with Alexa and have an Echo device, you would be able to use custom voice commands such as “Alexa, turn on kitchen smart plug” to control it.