Hello, my name is Matt and I fear that I am an entry-level Smart Home Addict. I’m not full-blown mind you … more of recreational user that can see the eventual descent into hopeless addiction. Now, in full disclosure, none of the above is meant to make light of serious addictions or anyone who suffers from one. Rather, the point I am making is that smart home products start with just one often time and then can quickly lead to many. Now I am not what anyone would consider a “techie” person, despite being a millennial. I do not Facebook, Twitter, Tik-Tok, Instagram, or… Myspace. I know how to use computers and smartphones, but outside of using them professionally, I am not one to be found casually utilizing technology.
However, several years ago, I was gifted a very nice Honeywell thermostat setup for my home that included the Red-Link Gateway for remote access via a phone, tablet, or computer. I must say that I was immediately taken by it! For the first few weeks, I relentlessly checked and adjusted my thermostat. Why? Because I could, of course! There was one night I was out of town and my wife forgot her password for the app. I got a text at about 10:00 pm saying “I’m hot, would you please turn the thermostat down?” Super Husband to the rescue! Now, eventually, I settled down, and currently, it may be days or weeks in between me logging into my phone app to check the thermostats. While I don’t utilize my thermostat app every day or even every week, I would never have a thermostat in my home that is not remotely accessible. Never ever. I am hooked!
Beyond the thermostats, I have begun to explore other smart home products. My first acquisition was a Nest Doorbell (Google Nest Hello). The installation was quick and easy with the video quality surprisingly clear. I lasted about two weeks before I had to expand with an outdoor camera two-pack, also Google Nest. Now I am pondering the upgrading of my home smoke detectors to Nest Protect models and the possibility of a smart lock for the front door. I have not felt the urge to go after the smart plugs and light bulbs yet … but who knows what the future holds.
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One area that kept me from initially looking at smart home products, in the beginning, was the lack of a fully developed ecosystem. Initially, the market was too full of individual product vendors that each had their own app. That was a huge disappointment for me. I don’t want to open one app for my thermostat, one for my cameras, and another for my door lock. That is annoying and, thankfully, something that has been less of a concern as product lines have grown more robust. This has drawn me closer to Google Nest products as the app has been easy to use and allows me to monitor all my devices from a central point. In fact, I absolutely love my Honeywell thermostats … but once the rest of the home is Google Nest, I’m not sure how long I will be able to hold off before upgrading the thermostats too!