Home automation may have been around for many years – but in 2022 it is set to make a big impact on modern kitchen design. Technology is making rapid advances and at the same time, it is becoming more affordable so it is accessible to more homeowners.
So what exactly does home automation involve? Basically, it means using technology to control various aspects of your home life. This can include things like turning on lights or appliances using voice control or a phone app, or adjusting the temperature in your house remotely.
We know that Hanstrom customers value convenience… that is why our customers love our easy-to-use, instant boiling water taps. As well as being space-saving and minimalist, they just make cooking or making hot drinks so much easier. In that spirit, we wanted to share some of the interesting developments in home automation that will make your kitchen much easier to use.
For us, voice control becomes even more important in the kitchen, where we often have our hands full cooking. There is nothing more frustrating, when cutting raw chicken (for example) than having to stop, wash your hands to change the TV channel for the kids, before going straight back to your raw ingredients!
The three main voice control tools are Google Home, Amazon Echo and Apple HomeKit.
Apple HomeKit is a home automation platform released by Apple Inc. in 2014. It allows users to control connected devices in their home using the voice assistant Siri. Devices that can be controlled include lights, door locks, thermostats and garage doors.
HomeKit is based on the idea of creating a “home mesh” network. This is a local area network where all your HomeKit-enabled devices are connected to each other. This allows for easy control of devices, as commands can be given from any device in the network. For example, you could turn off all the lights in your house from your bedside table, or change the temperature on your thermostat from your phone on the way home from work.
Google Home is a voice-activated assistant that can do a variety of tasks, including controlling your smart home devices. To use Google Home, you first need to set it up. You can do this by downloading the Google Home app and following the on-screen instructions. Once you’ve set up Google Home, you can start using it by saying “Hey Google” or “OK Google.”
Amazon Echo is a voice-controlled assistant that does many things, such as playing music, setting alarms and controlling other smart devices in your home. To use Echo, you just need to say “Alexa,” followed by what you want her to do. For example, “Alexa, play jazz music” or “Alexa, turn on the lights.” Echo uses far-field voice recognition, so she can hear you from across the room—even while music is playing. Echo also has a built-in speaker so she can answer your questions and read audiobooks to you.
You may well be familiar with the names – but did you know just how many things in your kitchen they can now control?
The growth of the kitchen as a family room has made a TV a fairly common feature in kitchens here in the UK. If you want to be able to change cartoons for the kids without having to step away from your cooking, this Sony Bravia TV might just be the answer. The Sony Bravia can be controlled with voice commands using Google Home or Amazon Echo. It also has Chromecast built-in, so you can easily stream content from your smartphone, tablet, or other devices.
One thing that may not immediately leap to mind when it comes to smart kitchen appliances is your blinds! Hillarys electric blinds come with a motorised control system that makes it easy to open and close your blinds with the simple click of a button. With just a few simple steps, you can be up and running with your new electric blinds in no time at all. What you might not realise though, is that the Somfy smart hub connected to your electric blinds can actually be paired with Apple Home Kit – allowing you to open and close your kitchen blinds with a word of control!
Voice control in the kitchen is still, arguably, in its infancy but this is a trend that we see growing massively in 2022 and beyond, and of course as early adaptors to labour-saving technology, we see Hanstrom’s customers being at the forefront of this trend!