It’s been awhile since I have written a post, but I wanted to talk about Home Automation a bit. It’s a new area which I have just started to get into thanks to a friend who recommended it to me. I was looking for a home security system, but I didn’t want to go with one of the big guys (ADT, Vivint, etc.) and get stuck with paying a $40/mo fee for monitoring, etc.
I started to look into Home Automation, specifically Samsung Smart Things and came across a really nice home monitoring starter kit at Amazon. This thing is just awesome!!
The setup took me 3 or 4 days to really figure it out, with a few late nights in there, which was frustrating – but now I’m all up and running.
My setup consists of the following, but I will probably be extending upon that further:
- Front + Back Door Sensors
- Kitchen and Living Room Motion Detectors
- 1 Connected Light Bulb
- Automated Power Outlet
- Water Leak Sensor
All of the devices above are setup and monitoring as we speak, the motion sensors were a bit tricky to get setup – but now work like a charm.
The Smart Things app, as the reviews point out, can be a bit confusing, they definitely need to work on their UX/UI. But once I found out that they have an online portal where you can add-on your own custom devices, a full SDK, etc. I was blown away! This thing is so configurable and I just managed to integrate my Nest Thermostat and Nest Protect into the Smart Things app.
I have some basic routines setup:
- Arm and Disarm all sensors when leaving and returning to the home
- Turn off lights when go to bed
My ultimate goal is to get it setup, so that when I come home at night – certain lights will turn on as I pull into the driveway. And also simulate that we are home, when we are not.
If you are looking to add Nest products, this is a great add-on.