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  • Writer's pictureAlicia Nisi

Smart Home vs. Home Automation, What’s the Difference?

If you’re wondering what’s the difference between a smart home and home automation, you’re not alone

With how rapidly technology is advancing and the speed at which new solutions are being introduced to the market, it can get a little hazy when you’re doing your research. Whether you’re exploring how to transform your house into a smart home or reading up on the 2020’s best voice assistants, let’s dive into the differences between a smart home and home automation.

The short answer’s same same, but different. While there are overlaps between smart home and home automation and the terms are often used interchangeably, there are key differences to note.

Smart Home

As the name suggests, a smart home uses smart technology to connect, share data and interact with other devices and its users. By using your phone, laptop or other devices, you can control smart electronic gadgets and sensors, via the internet or your local network. Each of these smart devices will typically have their own app or interface that you’ll use to trigger and interact with its functions.

For example, you might have a smart doorbell that allows you to talk to Mr. Postie, via its connected app, when he drops off a parcel at the door. Whether you’re saying thanks or to leave it in a safe spot, the app notifies you of the doorbell being rung and facilitates two-way communication.

If you have smart lights, you’ll use a separate manufacturer’s app to dim, brighten and switch them on and off.

While a home that’s filled with smart devices has its chore-reducing perks, you’ll still be multi-tasking between the various apps and interfaces to get the functionality going.

Home Automation

Now that we’ve explored smart home, let’s talk about home automation. The beauty of home automation lies in its ability to link and automate your entire ecosystem of smart devices. Rather than going from one app to another, home automation requires minimal little to no interaction with any app or interface. Responding to what you’re doing, the smart devices come to life automatically and harmoniously.

Say you’re going on holidays and you’re weary of potential intruders. With a smart video doorbell, security cameras and motion sensors, you can monitor and control your home by using your smartphone and an app. On the other hand, an automated security system connects all the key security setups in your home on a single platform, allowing them to work seamlessly together.

For example, you can set up your home automation system to learn your typical behaviours and simulate “mockupancy” while you’re away. Whether it’s automatically switching on the lights or turning on the TV, automated security can replicate your everyday activity to give the impression you’re still at home, with minimal app usage.

Automated window blinds are another crowd-favourite example. Linked with home automation, your blinds can open or close when the internal temperature hits a certain point, without needing your manual input.

Smart home and home automation, which one should you pick?

Put simply, if you’re after maximum perks and minimal effort, home automation’s the way to go. With a home automation setup like Control4, it offers effortless integration of all your smart functions and seamless control over your entire home environment. Depending on your lifestyle and priorities, home automation can be weaved throughout your home, from theatre room to lighting, temperature control, security systems and more – automatically responding to your activity or a touch of your fingertip. No need to skip from app to app.

Whether you’re planning to implement a brand new automation system or to upgrade your smart home, it’s always best to leave it to the professionals. At Nisi Group, we’ll work closely with you to understand your needs and goals before customising a tailored home automation solution that works hard for you and your family. Whether it’s just the main living area or a whole-home build, we’ll walk you through the entire process, from design to aftercare.

To learn more about home automation or how we can help you find the best solution, talk to us today. For the full home automation experience, give us a call on 03 9071 2400 to visit our beautifully integrated, certified Control4 showroom.

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