In the smart home we often talk about the actions, appliances and installation that come together to create a seamless smart home living. But what about the user interface, aka the app, that controls that experience?
How simple is that app to use, and how readily does it respond to the user’s needs within the smart home environment?
At Lera Smart Home Solutions, we utilise the FIBARO smart home ecosystem, which happens to be accompanied by one of the best smart home apps available. Known as FIBARO Home Center, it recently attracted a lot of positive attention, including receiving an innovation award at CES Unveiled in New York.
So, let’s walk through the FIBARO app and how it’s a major component of intuitive living in the smart home.
A quick smart home refresher
Smart homes work on a simple premise: products, sensors and activators all communicate with each other using wireless technology to make smart fixtures, fittings and appliances do things.
The sensors allow smart home items to understand their environment such as whether they are on or off, what the temperature is, how dark it is etc, and then action can be taken in response using activators or modules.
These activators or modules are the “doers”, they are the physical hardware that makes things happen. They tell the blind to roll up, the skylight to close or the lights to come on. They might do this automatically, based on information from the sensors and programming, or they can also be controlled ad hoc by the home owner.
All this information is relayed back to a central Hub, which is the brains of the operation. The Hub notes whether something is on or off, understands the parameters that apply to this item and relay information to the activator about the required response. This Hub is controlled by an app.
Basically, the smart home app works as a simple user interface where you can control all elements of your smart home using a smart phone, tablet or computer. You can do this remotely or while you’re at home.
You can use the app to monitor the state of your home and make things happen. For example, you can tell the app to unlock the front door because your mother has arrived.
You can also create automatic responses like setting exterior lights to switch on when a sensor notes it’s dark. Or you can use the app to set scenes, so a whole host of things occur at the simple push of a button. A scene might see the lights dim, the TV switch on and the blinds close in your media room because you have created a “movie time” scene that you can activate on your app.
This app can also be controlled using voice command on your phone or via smart speaker.
The importance of a great smart home app
As the app is the main vehicle of communication you have with your smart home, it’s a critical element in the smart home experience. It should be easy to use, simple to navigate and allow you the freedom to create a smart home environment that meets your needs.
Meet FIBARO Home Center
FIBARO Home Center is the brand new FIBARO mobile app for smart home management which was awarded the title of CES Innovation Honoree in the Software category at CES Unveiled New York.
The app builds on the years of experience FIBARO has at the cutting edge of smart home technology, offering an interface that’s easy to use, and also employs machine learning to intuitively manage the smart home environment.
FIBARO explains: “One of the main goals of creating a new app was to increase the comfort of controlling smart devices at home”.
To ensure this, the app has been extensively tested by 1000 users, with their feedback and suggestions all incorporated into the final design. And the result is a winning combination of convenience and intuition.
“The app is equipped with a clear and intuitive interface, thanks to which the user can easily handle any FIBARO devices and other compatible products. Additionally, the app uses machine learning to remember user preferences and respond to their needs,” FIBARO notes.
“Immediately after launching the mobile app, the user will see a summary of the home status, where state of alarms, temperature, power consumption, movement, light, doors, windows and shutters, gates and switches are displayed.
“Then the user can go to favourite devices, scenes, or to rooms summary dashboard. The mobile app will also suggest actions based on usage analysis.”
The app features two colour themes – daytime of light blue and silver, and night time of dark blue, it also boasts haptic technology when actions are triggered to assist the visually impaired, has shortcuts for voice assistant Siri, and communicates with Google Home.
Lera Smart Home Solutions is a leading installer of smart home technology in the greater Sydney region. Our team boasts over 20 years’ experience in IT networking, programming and the electrical industry.
We have sourced the most reliable and cost efficient solutions from around the world to provide the very best in smart home solutions, and work with our clients to understand their needs.