10 ways a Smart Home will make your life easier



Find out just some of the many ways a Smart Home can make your life easier.

From peace of mind about home security to saving money on your bills and waking up to a fresh cup of coffee, here's our essential selection of smart ways a smart home can make your life run more smoothly.

1. Save money on your energy bills

With energy costs on the rise there's now a better way to raise the temperature in your home. A smart thermostat takes away the guesswork from your heating settings. You can tell it to turn off the moment you leave the house. You can set it to keep bedrooms warmer (or cooler, depending on the season) than the rest of the house when you're sleeping. Some smart thermostats will even respond to the weather outside - mild winter's day? Let's reduce the temperature inside a notch then.

And because you can control a smart thermostat directly from the SmartThings app on your smartphone or tablet, you've got the freedom to adjust its settings anytime, anywhere. Say you've picked up the kids from school and the youngest has the chills, simply use your phone to ramp up the temperature at home and it'll be lovely and toasty when you step through the front door.

What you need

  • SmartThings Hub
  • Free SmartThings app - iOS or Android
  • SmartThings-compatible thermostat
  • SmartThings Power Outlet

2. Automate your home lighting (and control it from anywhere)

Whether they're saving you money, securing your home, or giving your rooms a nicer feel, smart lights are an essential part of smart living. Set them to turn on and off as you enter and leave rooms so you're never lighting an empty room. Off on hols? Get your lights to come on automatically at certain times so it looks like you're home. Or how about Motion Sensor-triggered lights that turn on when you go to the bathroom in the middle of the night – making stubbed toes a thing of the past?

There's a bunch of smart lighting options out there. Just set them up with your SmartThings Hub, control them via the SmartThings app on your phone and open your eyes to a brighter way of living.

What you need

3. Never lose your keys at home again

Forget hunting high and low for those keys only for them to turn up in the last place you look. SmartThings Presence Sensor on the key fob and your keys will be easily trackable no matter where you've misplaced them. Tap 'Beep' in the SmartThings app and three loud beeps will guide you to where they are.

What you need

4. Protect your home while you're away

Going on holiday doesn't have to mean it's open season on your belongings. With a SmartCam installed you'll be able to keep an eye on things wherever you are.

The clever cam takes photos, records video and audio, detects motion and suspicious sounds, alerts you to anything dodgy and streams it live so you can instantly see what's happening on your smartphone via the SmartThings app.

Video, images and audio are saved so you've got evidence available if the worst happens. But it doesn't have to get that far - pair a SmartCam with a wireless speaker and your home can boom out a terrifying message if you've identified an intruder on the prowl. "Hi! You're on camera and we're calling the police" should stop them in their tracks.

What you need

Optional

5. Know when your kids return home safely from school

It couldn't be easier to check that your little ones have arrived home safe and sound after school. Providing both you and the kids are equipped with a smartphone with the SmartThings app downloaded, the app will send you a free notification once they come home.

If the kids are too young to carry a smartphone, no matter. Simply pop a SmartThings Presence Sensor in their school bag and it'll perform exactly the same job - alerting you when they’re back within range of your SmartThings Hub. If you've got a smart lock installed as well then the front door will automatically open for them and lock behind them – so you don’t have to fret if you can’t make it home in time.

What you need

Optional

  • Danalock 125 BLE & Z-Wave

6. Stop a tiny leak causing costly repairs

If there's one thing watching Titanic has taught us, it's never underestimate the perils of water damage. Even a minor leak can rapidly escalate into a nightmare and unless you've got DIY SOS on speed dial you'll be left with a major repair headache.

So make sure it never gets that far. With a SmartThings Hub in your home and a SmartThings Moisture Sensor positioned in an area that's prone to flooding – such as under an old pipe or near a washing machine – you'll receive an instant alert to your smartphone the moment any water is detected. A quick response could potentially save you a fortune.

What you need

7. Be ready for whatever the weather throws at you

Fed up of wearing flip flops in a downpour and lugging a coat around during an Indian summer spell? SmartThings combined with the Netatmo Weather Station can give advance warning of what the great British weather has in store for us.

The weather station includes indoor and outdoor modules that help you live smarter and healthier. The outdoor sensor sends real-time weather readings to your smartphone - covering everything from humidity to air quality - providing you with the best possible idea of what to wear and which outdoor activities to plan.

The indoor sensor measures the level of CO2 in your home and sends you a warning when you need to air out the house. It also gives you readings for indoor temperature, humidity and air quality to help you achieve a healthier, more comfortable home.

What you need

8. Get text alerts if your forget to shut your front door, garage or freezer

So you're halfway on your journey to work when the thought strikes: 'Did I leave the front door open?!' You almost certainly didn't but you can't be sure and with every passing second the worry builds.

Well, now you can nip that nonsense in the bud. With a SmartThings Multi Sensor placed anywhere that would fill your soul with dread if it's left open – front door, garage, freezer, My Little Pony display cabinet – you'll get a text alert if it needs closing. And if there's no alert, you can carry on with your daily business free from spine-chilling paranoia.

What you need

9. Stop the kids playing with dangerous products

If there's one thing you can guarantee about kids, it's that whatever you don't want them to be playing with is exactly what they'll most want to get their sticky little mitts on. Turn your back for a second and they'll be in the cupboard full of chemical cleaning products, toggling the window latch or scaling a hastily-assembled tower of building blocks to access the medicine cabinet.

Fortunately for your sanity, help is at hand. Place a SmartThings Multi Sensor on any off-limits area and if it's opened unexpectedly you'll receive an instant alert. If you've got smart lights or a smart alarm you could even take things up a few notches with flashing lights and wailing sirens when your little treasure has been caught red-handed in the cookies cupboard.

What you need

Optional

10. Wake up and smell the coffee

A SmartThings Power Outlet is a beautiful thing, capable of giving even the dumbest electrical device a vital boost of brainpower. But we're struggling to find a better partner for it than a coffee machine. Because when you plug your humble coffee maker into a SmartThings outlet it becomes capable of genuine magic. And by magic we mean the ability to tell it to brew your morning coffee every morning at a time that suits you, simply via the SmartThings app on your phone.

Wake up bleary-eyed and grumpy, fire up the percolator from your phone, and by the time you've stumbled down to the kitchen you'll have a pot of freshly-brewed, steaming hot coffee ready to put a spring in your step.

What you need

  • SmartThings Hub
  • Free SmartThings app - iOS or Android
  • SmartThings Power Outlet

A good starting point for all these Smart Home ideas is the Samsung SmartThings Starter Kit which contains the Hub and three sensors to get you going.

Learn more about Samsung SmartThings and to view the range.