Smart home is recently very popular statement. There are some, who have completely no idea what is this all about. Others thinks it’s too expensive. Yet another are scared that smart home will lock them down in the toilet, turn off the light and won’t let out until they die of hunger.
We will get straight to the point of how we use it:
- Take smartphone in your hand
- Use Home application
- Turn on/off light
For enable person it’s an easy job: get on your feet, walk 4m toward wall and turn on the switch. However for disable person (the one with physical limits) it’s like climbing 4th floor, if possible. Furthermore during the night, in the darkness you need to reach that switch blindly. So? You want a challenge? How about walking blindly on the 4th floor?
How much does it cost?
About 10-25 USD for one smart-switch IoT. There also exist adapters pinning on the plug so we can manage without montaging anything in the house. You can use it to steer eg. night lamp.
What else is needed?
Smart-switches are connected by WiFi, so it need to be in range of home router. Home routers nowadays everyone have. If they don’t how they entered this page? Aaa… so you used your smartphone? On smartphone you can use hotspot to share internet on WiFi and it’ll do 🙂 even better for if you are outside of the house no hacker will enter and make you a disco at home 😀
At the beginning you have to configure it all with WiFi network and add to your Google or Apple account. Is this hard? It’s all written in manual. Easy, look on the sub-page Authors, if such dumbass manage to do this you can do it too.
Should I be afraid?
Of what? That you won’t be able to turn it on without a smartphone? Easy, it has a switch to turn it on and off without a smartphone.
That you will be electrocute? During montage it is possible, so if you don’t know how to do it leave it to an expert. This ones to plugs, if you don’t take it into pieces, is save as common adapter. But easy, its hard to take into pieces.
Okay, I take it!
If you decide on smart-switch first make research, whether there won’t be any awkward situation. It is electric device plugged directly to the 120V or 230V power and need two wires: phase and neutral. In some apartments, eg. at ours, it was done so badly that there was phase, coming through the switch and toward the lamp. From the lamp was coming neutral some other way in the wall. Luckily there were two wires from switch to lamp, because it was the old thingy with double switch and three light-bulb (one wire was activating one light-bulb the other another two). In the lamp I connected neutral wire using connector with a switch wire and that way I delivered neutral wire to smart-switch. Unfortunately now its only three light-bulb or none. My wife doesn’t mind though.
There was another awkward situation with placing this smart-switch in the hole from the old switch. Unfortunately the hole was too small for
mounting bracket. Luckily after removing them switch fitted, however it wasn’t holding and it keep falling off. Expansion tape did help, I taped smart-switch part that coming inside and pushed it in and it a year now.
Both problems above aren’t there with smart-adapter. Furthermore some have
measurement of electricity consumption feature, which come through smart-plug.
P.S. Described devices work through cloud. As a result you can steer turning on and off the light being far away from home, having access to the internet (the internet must work at home as well). You can make fun of householders and guests, especially with connection with hidden camera and live record.
If one knows how to do a micro-controller programming and knows about electronics and like doing this will tread on air. This device based on ESP8266 MCU. You can solder some wires add programator and flash your own program. Obviously you loose warranty, but you gain new possibilities, such as:
- working without big corporation cloud from foreign country factoring – instead direct connection to local network,
- manage it from your own application instead vendor
- whatever you can code in programming language
You don’t have to write program from scratch, there is available open-source software Tasmota. If you want to do more challenging things I highly recommend that you check out polish project SUPLA. There are some companies that are selling this device with software already on it thanks to that you have your warranty.
So good luck and don’t burn your house. 😀