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5 smart home sensors you can offer customers
Prasanth Aby Thomas, Consultant Editor 2019/8/29

Systems integrators and solution providers have to come up with a clear strategy that can help customers understand what smart home actually is and how it can help them. For the average customer, the concept of the smart home continues to remain ambiguous. This is because every other day, there is a company or a startup that comes up with a new product that claims to make their homes more intelligent. Unfortunately, on a closer look, most customers can understand that many of these products don’t really add any value to their homes.

It is in this context that systems integrators and solution providers have to come up with a clear strategy that can help customers understand what smart home actually is and how it can help them. In a blog post, IBM listed some of the most important sensors that can make a home smart. Here is an overview of some of them.

  1. Fire and CO detection sensors
Fire has for long been a homeowner’s worst nightmare. A traditional alarm system has served people well until now, alerting owners and fire forces when there is a need. But new sensors can even let you know of the presence of any dangerous gases that could hurt people and property.

“Some new sensors not only detect both smoke and CO, but also can monitor the overall air quality in your home and watch for pollutants like dust, soot, pollen, temperature, humidity, air staleness, pollution, and particulates,” IBM notes. “Even more attractive are the discounts that insurance companies offer when you use these sensors.”
  1. Leak detection sensors
After fire, water leaks are the main reason for insurance claims. New of a broken line to cooler or a pipe is something no homeowner wants to hear as it will not just affect them but even other homes that may be in the same building. Water leak detectors are an ideal solution that would let you know the source of a leak and help devise a solution.

“A moisture detection sensor can give you a heads up if your home is at risk due to freezing pipes, or even a broken waterline,” IBM says. “These sensors alert you to leaks in your home so can fix the problem immediately and not after the damage has been done. The sensor can be placed around water heaters, dishwashers, refrigerators, sinks, sump pumps and anything at risk for water leakage. If the sensor detects unwanted water notification is sent to you, so you can hurry home to check out the problem.”
  1. Video doorbell
Security is a primary concern for all homeowners and controlling access to the homes is key to ensuring it. Gone are the days when you had to be at home and open the door to find out who is outside. Now with video doorbells, you can control entry through your mobile phone, from anywhere you are.

“The video doorbell is also a theft deterrent sensor. This cool device allows you to see who is at your door from your smartphone,” IBM explains. “Whether you are inside alone and want to screen who is at the door, or if you are at work and someone is at your house. You will know. Couple this with the door open/close sensor and thieves will avoid your house and stay away from the trouble of breaking in!”
  1. Motion sensors
As the name implies, these allow homeowners to know if there is a movement in a designated area. Especially when no one is at home, these sensors can alert relevant people about any intrusions. They can also be useful if there is a child at home and the parents want to restrict the child’s movement in certain areas. Motion sensors can also be integrated with video surveillance systems, which means you can see what has happened when an alert is received.

“Motion sensors are also great for helping to save energy,” IBM explains. “These sensors can be connected to lighting or the thermostat to help control the energy usage in a room based on the occupancy of the room e.g. it will turn the lights out if no one is in the room or adjust to an energy-efficient temperature when the room is unoccupied.”
  1. Intercom or hub
This is where you will be able to control all these different sensors, and more, installed in the house. Intercom also allows you to have visual calls within the house or from your phone while away. This is especially useful when there are elderly people at home who need special care.

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Messe Frankfurt New Era Business Media Ltd. All rights reserved. 2019/11/13 print out