What Does the Future of the Smart Home Look Like?
You likely have several ‘smart’ products in your home already, potentially in the office, and perhaps in your car.
So what happens when it all gets a little too much? Ruslan Vinahradau, CEO of Zorachka*, sets out to discuss with CEO Today the potential future of the ‘smart’ home and what that looks like.
It is truly amazing to live in the most modern smart home of today. My personal experience of living in a smart apartment involves more than 170 devices for controlling light, heated floors, locks, air condition, cameras and many other things, all connected to the Internet and are managed natively via Siri.
The most important consideration while thinking about the sheer number of devices within a home, is how to provide all of these devices with internet access. Those who tried to introduce at least a dozen smart devices to their home, have probably already noticed how often they fail.
Today, manufacturers are beginning to integrate WiFi networks into their devices, instead of special protocols for the smart home. But when you connect 50+ devices, problems occur – network packets are often lost, causing delays communication with smart devices, and sometimes complete loss of connection with them.
While 50 devices might seem like a lot, if you consider all the light switches, thermostats, floor heating, sockets, TVs, locks, sensors, etc., that can be installed in a few-bedroom home, then 50 devices is a realistic number. An ordinary WiFi router cannot withstand the sheer volume of devices on top of the laptops and phones that already use the bandwidth.
The icing on the cake is when you try additionally to connect 5-10 cameras that record video in the cloud, which could completely overload your network.
That is why, in my opinion there are two compatible solutions.
First of all, LTE networks is where I see the future of smart home connectivity. We all know that WiFi was never able to conquer the cities of the world as the main access system to the global network. And the reason for this is LTE, which turned out to be well structured and grew at the expense of the mobile phone market. With a high data transfer rate, they don’t require the user to purchase and configure a home router, and they work almost everywhere. Slowly but surely, LTE and 5G will force WiFi out of our devices.
In turn, returning to the second problem which is complete overloading the network, because of the recording data in the cloud, I can say that the best solution is to store the data inside the device. Smart home devices have a microprocessor inside that can be used to process personal data and store it on NAND at the same time, such as the Homam* camera. Another solution is using the microprocessor to encrypt users’ sensitive data inside the devices, so that this information can be safely transported further through the internet – or, better yet, to transfer it directly to the user without cloud servers that are controlled by device manufacturer.
As a result, it is absolutely obvious for me that LTE & 5G and integrated storage is the future of the smart home. This is a real solution of the problem of Internet access for your smart devices in the house, and what’s more, the privacy issues of your personal data. As one of the pioneers of this idea, I always keep in mind that you need to aim where the ball will be, not where it is now.