After a long hectic week, imagine you’re on your way to a long-awaited house party with friends. But there’s a complication — you have just realised that the entrance to your house would be dusty and dirty, thanks to the ongoing construction next door, and you surely do not want to start the party on a wrong foot. So, you take the matter in your own hand, grab your smartphone, and put your vacuum cleaner to work before you reach. You also switch on the music and the AC and set the ambience for the party through smart lighting. Welcome to the future.
Pulak Satish Kumar, Chief Operating Officer of Puresight Systems believes that as we draw closer to the end of this decade, India’s marvellous transformation through it deserves nothing short of a standing ovation. Coming from an era of sporadic digitisation, our country has today become the world’s second-largest smartphone market and is being highlighted worldwide as an exemplary case of digital adoption. Smart devices are increasingly becoming one of the basic needs for people across all walks of life – from corporate bigwigs and tech professionals to cab drivers, small retailers, and chaiwalas.
Thanks to the Smart Cities Mission, we will soon be witness to the rise of new, high-tech smart cities that’ll have state-of-the-art technologies as the core component of their underlying framework. And this change has already started with the smallest unit of these cities: the individual households, which are becoming smarter each day. How? Let’s have a look.
Beyond smart cities and smartphones, how smart devices and smart homes are catching India’s fascination.
For the uninitiated, smart devices are digital gadgets or appliances that have the ability to connect with other devices across a broader network. These devices are based on IoT technology (Internet of Things) and can transmit information and execute commands leveraging the same. In other words, smart devices are interconnected in nature and can communicate with each other using either the internet or the local network connection. Such devices are the building blocks of connected smart homes and can be controlled using smartphones, tabs, computers, or virtual home assistants.
Full-fledged smart homes have become a not-so-distant reality in India. And Indian tech enthusiasts are already making their homes ‘smarter’ and future-ready by using an array of such IoT devices. These devices include smart door locks, smart electrical appliances, smart lighting systems, smart home assistants, and smart home cleaning solutions.
Smart devices are transforming our lives - from ambience to convenience
Smart devices, today, are adding unmatched comfort and convenience to modern Indians’ everyday lifestyles. If you’ve ever been tasked with cleaning your home, you know how difficult it is to reach out to ‘that’ inaccessible spot underneath the couch. It is to address this challenge that hi-tech Indian consumers are now turning towards progressive offerings such as smart robo-vacuum cleaners. These Wi-Fi connected devices pacing about the length and breadth of your house have multistage cleaning systems and come loaded with adaptive navigation and patented technologies. They often leverage advanced optical and acoustic sensors and are able to identify dust, mites, and allergens that are as small as 10 microns and invisible to human eye. They can sweep the most challenging of floor surfaces, including tiles, laminates, hardwood, and door entrances. Some specialised offerings even include multiple floor-cleaning brushes and specially designed edge-sweeping brushes that sweep dust and debris off wall edges and corners.
Robotic vacuum cleaners constantly build a map and send cleaning reports to the user. They can easily navigate across and underneath household furniture while avoiding stairs, drop-off locations, or any other obstacle that stands in their way and can be scheduled for cleaning from anywhere.
It is also a known fact that different shades of colours can affect our mood and the overall ambience of our surrounding. Modern smart lighting systems are based precisely on this principle. They can sync with the movie that you’re watching, a game that you’re playing, and even the music that you’re listening to so that you can witness a truly immersive, out-of-the-world experience.
The intelligent system adds a unique touch of ambience through its colour gamut and can also be changed through preconfigured settings or manually by a user. Such systems are remotely operable and have light schedule configurations, which provides superlative control to the user.
As we discuss home lighting systems, another smart offering becoming popular amongst ultramodern Indians is the smart switch.
Wi-Fi connected smart electrical switches are being actively installed in many Indian households and can be turned on/off remotely using a smartphone application. They also help users control their power usage, monitor home energy utilisation, prevent device overheating, and set-up multiple scheduled timers for multiple appliances (such as ACs and geysers). Equipped with smart switches, you don’t have to worry the next time you need to switch on the geyser before you arrive or turn off the AC long after you have stepped out of your home.
And even robots need a full-time boss: How to regulate your devices with or without your presence?
Some of the other popular smart home offerings include smart door locks, smart ACs, smart TVs, smart fridge, and so on. But when you have an entire ensemble of smart devices installed at your home, how do you control them? Using your smartphone, obviously. But then again, isn’t it too much of hassle reaching out to your smartphone every time (which could possibly be anywhere from your bed, kitchen, study, or could’ve just slipped in the folds of the couch that you’re so comfortably seated on) to operate a device? You don’t have to.
Even there, AI-powered smart solutions and virtual home assistants, such as Amazon Alexa, can solve all your worries. You merely have to give voice commands such as "Alexa, turn off the lights and clean home after I leave for the office." Alexa would smartly notice when your smart door lock gets locked and do the needful. The device acts as your remote assistant, establishing itself at the centre of command dissemination that integrates with an array of internet-connected devices, while also managing individual operations.
The level of inconvenience that we still have to face in this day and age, when technology is trickling down to nearly every aspect of life, is nothing short of disappointing. Thankfully, smart gadgets are helping us become more efficient and effective, by reducing our workload and doing away with our physical constraints – one task at a time!...