Make your Home Smarter

Make your Home Smarter

10 ways to make your home 'smarter'

If you enjoy technology, you've probably drooled over high tech homes you see in the movies or magazines. What if we were to tell you that at least some of that is easily doable?

 Here’s how you can make your existing home smarter…

 

1: ENRG Rainbow Smart LED bulbs¬

 These 9 Watt LED bulbs are a quick upgrade when you want remote controlled lights while the colour changing feature is a superb bonus. The RF remote (Rs 1,000 extra, but a required accessory) can be used to control up to 20 bulbs.

 It's responsive, doesn't need to be pointed at the bulbs to work, controls brightness as well as changes the colour of the light per your taste.

 You only need to pair each bulb with the remote the first time you use it. Thereafter, the link is maintained even if the bulbs are swapped out.

 One catch is that they only come in the E27 (screw type) base so make sure that your light fitting supports it before buying.

 Price: Rs 1,290 each

 

2 : ENENRG Speaker LED BulbRG Speaker LED Bulb

 

This dual purpose device is a 10Watt LED bulb and Bluetooth speaker in one unit ¬and it fits into the most common B22 `bayonet' type of bulb holder used in India.

 Inside the housing is a single 10Watt Bluetooth speaker that you can connect with to a phone, tablet or computer to play music.

 The box includes an infrared remote to switch the light on, off and control basic Bluetooth music functions (volume/track).

 ENRG has thoughtfully included both warm white and cool daylight LED modules which can be swapped depending on your preference. Imagine the surprise of your guests when they can't figure out where the music is playing from.

 Price: Rs 2,590

 

3: ZicZicom Wireless home security system¬om Wireless home security system¬

 Installing a home security system can be a complicated affair ¬ but for a retrofit, Zicom has a wireless solution and many available add-ons to suit your budget and preference.

 You can have wireless glass break sensors, motion sensors, door window open sensors and gas leak sensors that communicate directly with the central panel.

 Note that each peripheral sensor needs batteries to operate. With the system armed, any changes will wirelessly alert the central panel which sets off a loud alarm.

 Zicom also sells fingerprint enabled door locks that work on batteries . Install them as usual in place of a conventional lock and use your finger to unlock the door.

 Price: Rs 15,000 onwards

 

4: Wireless IP camera¬Wireless IP camera¬

 Setting up a security camera is simpler than you think. You no longer have to worry about technicalities, loads of equipment and messy wiring.

 All you need is a WiFi network and a smartphone. Get a wireless IP camera with pantilt support and two way audio communications . You can also have more than one.

 The camera needs a power outlet and can be placed on a table or mounted on a wall.

You need to connect the camera to your Wi-Fi network using the provided setup instructions ¬ takes around 5-10 minutes. Once done, you can remotely access the camera feed, control camera movements and even have two-way communication using the smartphone app or a browser.

 Price: Rs 5,000 onwards

 

4: Philips Living Colours¬

Lighting is an essential part of any room. If you want to deviate from the standard white and off-white lighting, you can use different colours to suit (or change) your mood. The Philips Living Colours range is available in micro (Rs 4,025), mini (Rs 11,999) and tablet lamp (Rs 13,225) variants.

 They offer multiple colours and adjustable intensity to instantly give a new look to any room.

 The entry-level lamp restricts you to 64 colours while the table lamp lets you switch between 16 million hues. The table lamp also comes with a wireless remote control and allows two lamps to be connected and controlled with a single remote.

 Price: Rs 4,025 onwards

 

5: Violet 3D surround systemlet 3D surround system¬

 You need a minimum of five speakers and a subwoofer for true surround sound, but setting up a home theatre system in an existing room means you have masses of cables snaking around the room.

With Violet 3D, each speaker is wireless and communicates with a central transmitter that is connected to your audio, video sources. There are multiple configurations available depending on your budget.

 To make sure that you get the best sound, an initial setup process auto-configures each speaker to the shape/size of your room and placement of speakers -- all you have to do is place the supplied microphone in the spot where you intend to sit.

 Note that while each speaker is wireless, it still needs a connection to a 220V wall outlet.

 Price: Rs 65,000 onwards

 

6: Kohler Moxie Showerheadhler Moxie Showerhead

If you like your music to follow you everywhere (including the shower), Kohler's Moxie is for you.

It's a showerhead with a built in, waterproof Bluetooth speaker and you can install it yourself in less than a minute.

The speaker has a built-in rechargeable battery (up to 7 hours backup) with a microUSB port for charging.

You can pair it with your phone/tablet, start your playlist before you step in to the shower and then just relax with the music.

The sound from the speaker is good enough for personal listening only. It's not for purists though, since you will have to hear the music over the sound of gushing water.

 Price: Rs 9,995

 

7: Havell's USB Power SocketsHavell's USB Power Sockets

 Most phones and tablets can get charged with USB, so why not have some USB sockets around the house instead of plugging in chargers?

 If you already have modular switches you can get a Crabtree Athena USB charger (Rs 625) that replaces an existing switch with a USB port to charge your devices. Make sure that you check the mounting box is the same make as the USB port module.

 Price: Rs 625 onwards 

8: Motion Sensor Lightstion Sensor Lights

 Although not entirely new, motion sensor lights are almost always overlooked, even though they can provide substantial savings in power costs (essentially paying for themselves over time).

 These lights automatically switch on when they detect any motion (they have infrared sensors built in) and switch off after a certain amount of time.

 They can also be used for home security ¬-- floodlights with motion sensors can be installed outdoors to `light up' any trespassers.

 Price: Rs 1,000 onwards

 

9: Orvibo Wiwo-R1 Wi-Fi Remote Control rvibo Wiwo-R1 Wi-Fi Remote Control ¬

 Do you have about 8 or 10 remote controls in your living room? What if you could replace them all with just one simple interface on your phone?

 You need the Wiwo-R1 unit which has 360-degree infrared emitters and connects to your home Wi-Fi network you control everything through the Allone app on your smartphone or tablet.

When you press a button on the app, the signal goes through your Wi-Fi to Wiwo which then transmits it as a conventional infrared (IR) signal.

 Wiwo-R1 can control up to 15 devices that accept IR commands such as your TV, media player, DVDBlu-Ray player, AV receiver, set top box, air conditioner, audio system and gaming console.

If your device isn't listed, Wiwo-R1 can even learn IR commands as long as you have the original remote of the device.

 Price: $33 including shipping from DX.com

 

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