Connected home network technologies

Louise Smyth

A connected home, sometimes also called a smart home, puts computer network technology to use for the added convenience and safety of families.

Home automation enthusiasts have experimented with connected home gadgets for many years.

Today, there are many new smart products that homeowners are interested in since these technologies keep evolving and become easier to use.

Modern connected home devices use wireless network protocols to communicate with each other.

Traditional wireless home automation devices were designed to operate on mesh networks using special protocols like Z-Wave and Zigbee.

Many connected homes, though, also have Wi-Fi home networks and integrate these other devices with it (a process called briding) using 3G and 4G-L TE technologies.

Thermostats, mobile phones/tablets are commonly used to remotely control connected home gadgets through the home network, but the smart hub is the heart and soul of their success.

Functions of connected homes

Via electronic sensors, connected homes are capable of monitoring environmental conditions including lighting, temperature and motion.

Control functions of connected home s include manipulating electromagnetic switches and valves.

Lighting and temperature control

The most basic application of traditional home automation is lighting control.

Smart dimmer switches (not to be confused wit h network switches) allow the brightness of electric bulbs to be remotely adjusted up or down, and also switched off or on, either on-demand or vi a a preset timer.

Both indoor and outdoor light control systems exist. They offer homeowners a combination of physical comfort, security and potential energy saving benefits.

Smart thermostat s control home heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems. These devices can be programmed to change home temperatures at different times of day in night to help save energy and maximise comfort.

Prime has been implementing newer Wifi-Bluetooth technologies in the smart hubs being manufactured for implementation with Verizon and AT&T wireless networks.