We recently moved to Cypress, Texas. The deciding factors for the home that we purchased included having an in-law unit for my mother-in-law and proximity to family. The fact that our Lennar NextGen home was a smart home really didn't factor into our decision-making process, but now that I've lived in our home for a month, I can't imagine going back to a dumb home.
Our smart home includes the following devices:
- Amazon and Sonos devices that can play music from Spotify
- Samsung television sets connected to AT&T U-verse, Netflix, and Amazon Prime
- Lutron ceiling lights and lamps
- Honeywell thermostats for upstairs, downstairs, and the in-law unit
- Baldwin and Kwikset door locks for the front and in-law unit doors
- Ring doorbells with cameras for the front and in-law unit door
- ADT security system
Here are the use cases that I have personally experienced:
|Use Case||Traditional||Smart (voice commands)|
|I'd like to hear some music in the family room.||Walk over to the stereo. Turn it on. Adjust the volume.||"Alexa, play Todd Rundgren on Lounge [the name of the Sonos playbar, subwoofer, and surround speakers in our family room]."|
|After a late night run to the store, my arms are full of groceries that need to be stored in the kitchen.||Put the grocery bags down. Turn on the kitchen light. Store groceries in their proper locations.||"Alexa, turn on the kitchen lights." followed by putting down the bags and storing the groceries.|
|My wife and I got into bed without turning off the light nor arming the security system.||Get out of bed. Arm the security system. Turn off the light. Find my way to the bed in the dark.||Without getting out of bed, say "Alexa, set ADT to stay." and "Alexa, turn off master bedroom lights."|
|We want some lights on at night to discourage burglars.||Manually turn them on and off or buy a timer and hook them to the wall plugs for table lamps.||Use the SmartThings app to schedule the lamps to come on and off at designated times.|
|My mother-in-law, with failing eyesight due to macular degeneration, wants to make it warmer in the in-law unit.||Fumble with the thermostat and hope the setting is correct.||"Alexa, set NextGen [name for in-law unit] to 70 degrees."|
|We wanted to accept a wine delivery when we weren't home.||Leave a note on the door for the delivery man.||The Ring app alerts me when the delivery man approaches the door. Use the Ring camera to see the package. Use the Ring app to talk to the delivery man and OK leaving the package at the door.|
|I was working in the backyard and wanted to put something in the garage without tracking dirt through the house.||Bring the item to the front yard. Go inside the house to enter the garage and open the garage door.||Bring the item to the front and use the ADT app on my smartphone to open the garage door.|
|We had out of town guests sleeping upstairs. My wife and I woke up at 6:15 am. It was hot in our downstairs bedroom, so she wanted to turn on the A/C. I figured that if it was hot downstairs, it was probably even hotter upstairs.||Get out of bed. Turn on the downstairs A/C. Go upstairs. Possibly disturb the sleeping guests. Turn on the upstairs A/C.||Grab the smartphone next to my bed. Use the Honeywell app to turn on the downstairs A/C. Also turn on the upstairs A/C. Go back to sleep without getting out of bed.|
There will be many other use cases in the coming years. These are just the ones I have experienced in our first month.
Our Lennar home was designed in AutoCAD. Autodesk has always been an automation company. Today, more than ever, that means helping our customers automate their design and make processes. We help them embrace the future of making, where they can do more (e.g., increasing efficiency, performance, quality), with less negative impact (e.g., social, environmental), and realize the opportunity for better (e.g., innovation, user experience, return on investment). A smart home certainly provides a better lifestyle for its inhabitants. It's all the comforts of home with the conveniences of technology.
Intelligence is alive in the lab.