Home automation (often termed "connected") is a group of techniques and devices that can be used to programmatically manage or remotely control various elements of the home. Various connected devices exist to optimize and automate the comfort, safety and energy management of the home.
What is home automation ?
The term "domotics" comes from the contraction of the Latin word "domus" and the French word "informatique". It refers to all the computer technologies and connected objects used in the house for automate and better control certain processes. A house in which such systems are installed is called a "communicating house" or "smart home". We are talking about "smart building"(or" smart home ") when it combines the assets of the communicating house and the so-called positive energy house (which consumes little or no external primary energy).
In a communicating house, home automation makes it possible to centralize the information and to control the different equipment. The range of home automation systems is very wide. For example:
- bulbs intelligent programmable or audible;
- alarms manageable at a distance;
- sensors climate;
- heating connected;
- blinds and shutters Automated rollers...
If the word "domotics" immediately evokes futuristic visions, some home automation devices have been present for a long time in many homes, such as:
- the coffee maker programmable;
- switches presence detectors;
- outdoor lamps motion detector;
- surveillance cameras…
In a communicating house, home automation is put at the service of a centralized and communicating information management. This makes it possible to optimize its operation, particularly as regards the management of elements having an impact on energy consumption. In the midst of expansion, Internet-connected devices complement the already existing home automation offer.
Proof of the rise of the communicating house, the digital giants now offer voice assistants that can centralize and facilitate the management of the various domotic elements of the house. Thus, the Google Home, the Apple Home Pod or the Echo by Amazon (to name only the best known) can control all connected devices in the house by simple voice command. It is thus possible to order by voice the launch of the radio, the setting of the thermostat, the color of the bulbs or the humidity level of the wine cellar (if all these elements are already equipped with home automation of course).
Thanks to applications available on a smartphone, the management of the communicating house is exported and can be done even from outside, at work or on vacation.
The different possibilities of the communicating house
Home automation is mainly involved in three aspects of everyday life:
- the management of energy consumption of the House;
- improving security the building and its inhabitants;
- increased comfort of life (especially for the most vulnerable: children, people with reduced mobility and seniors).
Energy consumption and comfort
With regard to current ecological issues, it is perhaps in terms of energy consumption that the communicating house offers the most interesting prospects. For example, it is possible to regulate the indoor temperature and the temperature of the central heating according to the outside temperature thanks to a smart thermostat. Connected to the outside of the house by wires or wireless sensors, it adjusts the heating closer to real weather conditions. Comfort is guaranteed and energy consumption is optimized. This type of system also makes it possible to program the temperature according to the lifestyle of each one (by lowering it at the time of bedtime, for example).
The Strip, the bulbs and the connected shutters can also be pre-programmed, to automate daily actions that save energy. The most sophisticated connected bulbs can even light up when someone enters the room and vary in color and light intensity depending on their movements in space.
Dishwasher, washing machine and dryer can also benefit from this type of connection.
In the bathroom, sensors can measure the ambient humidity and adapt the flow of the VMC. Some smart showers indicate the optimum temperature and flow rate with a light, or indicate with a red light when the recommended amount of water for environmentally sound management has been exceeded.
In the field of security, home automation allows centralized control of different alarm systems and control devices. It is thus possible to be notified via a smartphone when thealarm or the video surveillance detects an intrusion or when the smoke detectors reveal a problem.
There are also home automation systems specifically designed for people with reduced mobility (or "PMR"), the elderly or children. For example, it is possible to limit travel (and thus the risk of falling) thanks to remote controls connected to connected electrical outlets which will allow to manage remote devices (lamps, thermostat or shutters). All sensors which trigger the lighting of the lights (indoors as an outside) significantly improve the quality of life of the PMR and seniors and avoid travel in the dark. At the forefront of home automation, connected regulators enable efficient inventory management that can be passed on to a third-party caregiver to warn them of a lack of a product. For the visually impaired, the possibility of order the devices of the communicating house thanks to the voice is an important factor in improving daily life. For the safety of children, sensors can be installed at the stairs or on the terrace to be notified of falls as quickly as possible.
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