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Smart technology being utilized for home safety

December 12, 2014

Smart technology is popping up in everything from phones to TVs to watches. While the technology has brought an overwhelming trend of entertainment and health-related functions, its uses continue to grow. Most notably, modern technology is providing increased home security measures.

Smart technology is streamlining home security.
A survey by ERA Real Estate and HGTV found that 46 percent of the 2,437 participating consumers wanted their current or next homes to make use of smart technology. Of the participants, 51 percent were interested in installing the technology just to make their homes more appealing to potential buyers, proving that future generations see it as a top priority.

“They're making things so user friendly, so it's easy for people to adopt the technology,” said Jon Ellen Snyder, a Montana real estate broker with ERA Landmark.

Home security measures

The biggest use of home smart technology is undeniably in new security measures. And while alarm systems have greatly improved, modern technology is making new options available across the board. Here are some examples:

  • Webcams: Modern webcams allow movement inside the home to be detected and make it possible for the owner to speak through the system with whomever is inside. An example of this is the Dropcam, which can be connected to a smartphone and lets homeowners watch their properties while away, reported MarketWatch.
  • Smart locks: Mashable noted smart locks are becoming increasingly popular, as they can be activated through a mobile device. Additionally, password security is becoming more advanced, making smart locks harder to disengage than traditional locks.
  • Smart smoke detectors: Traditional smoke alarms go off and cause residents to run outside in a panic while wondering what is happening. While this is not a bad course of action and has been saving lives for a long time now, new smoke detectors are improving reactions. These detectors not only make different noises depending on the threat, but also can let the family know if there is an immediate danger. They can even trace the smoke or gas leak to its origin, in some cases shutting down the gas furnace if it seems to be a problem or if carbon monoxide is at dangerous levels. They can also turn on lights to illuminate a pathway to lead people out of the house in the event of a fire. Additionally, smart smoke detectors can track the home's air quality.

Other uses for smart home technology

Use of modern technology is not limited to home security. There are many additional reasons a family would want the most up-to-date appliances and functions, whether for energy efficiency or to get a lower home insurance quote. One example is a smart home thermostat, which make controlling the home temperature easier to use than ever. For example, new models can be controlled via smartphone, which means they can be turned up before the homeowner gets home or programmed to lower while everyone is asleep. Thermostats like this also make the best use of energy in the home, keeping costs low.

Technology works best if it is current

With any of this technology, it is important to keep it updated. If a home is full of all these gadgets and none of them are current with proper software security, they can be hacked and infiltrated. But keeping these devices up-to-date is not difficult at all.

Lt. John Kosanke of the Gross Pointe Woods Department of Public Safety gave simple advice to The Detroit News, which was to make small adjustments to home security to make sure it is in top working order. The more current it is with streamlined safety features, the more difficult it is to hack into.

“Most criminals are not that smart; they're opportunists,” Kosanke said.

Use modern technology, be safe and keep costs low.