I'm interested in Smart Home but...
I'm not sure how all the 'smart' bits and pieces work together?
Your home (or office) has a multitude of things going on at any given time. Most of which you need to interact with to make something happen. Light switches you need to touch. Heating you need to set. Appliances you need to switch on and remember to switch off. Even gates and doors that you open yourself!
Well what if all those things, lighting, heating, switches, security alarms, gates and doors all talked to each other? They all know what the other one is doing. They know what time it is, the day, the weather conditions and if you like, even where you happen to be. With all this knowledge, your Smart Home starts to live and breathe like you do. It makes things happen automatically based on the various conditions you choose. This is what Control Freq smart home products do together.
They say 'it takes two to tango'/ With Smart Home kit, you start with the Hub or the brain... The Hub is the lead. Without him it's basically two left feet all the way. Nothing would happen. He needs a partner! And so your new Smart Home begins...
So the Smart Home Hub is the brain. He is the master controller and acts out logical decisions based on the conditions of other things, ie: current status of systems ie: your alarm, or your entry gate, the weather, inside temperature, time of day or even your current location.
So to enable these functions in a smart home system you have two basic device types: sensors and controllers. You guessed it... One type senses things and and the other controls things. The hub just listens to their Z-Wave jibber jabber and does his job.
So let's look at smart home sensors. In a nutshell you can think of the sensors in terms of what they sense. Motion sensors for example are looking for movement and are typically used in security systems. The Fibaro motion sensor is a few steps smarter than that. It also has inbuilt temperature, light level and tamper sensors to really make it worth it's weight in gold.
On the other hand we have smart control devices. They control things like lights, heating, gates/ garages or anything you can physically switch on/off. These devices are the actuators. Imagine the temperature sensor in the motion sensor detailed above sensed your home had dropped under 18deg. It tells the hub, 'it's getting colder that the owner likes it'... The Hub then responds with 'OK, I'll tell the central heating valve (control device) to turn on in that part of the home'.
Your smart home is a team of devices all with a specific job to do. IThe sensors find things out, they tell the Hub and the Hub tells the control devices to physically switch things. It's a team effort based on the rules, conditions and preferences you, as the user, preset into the system when it's configured. It really is a simple logic system that anyone can play with. You may have heard of IFTTT which is 'If This Then That'. It's a logic that means you can tell a system 'if something happens, do this... Or if 'this happens' or 'that happens' but 'not if it's Friday' and only if 'this condition' is met then do 'this'. It's your way of explaining under what conditions should your smart home actually behave a certain way.
The Hub is 'The Brain'. It mnakes all the decision and hands out all the instructions and notifications. The smart home hub, sometimes referred to as 'The Controller' is your eyes and ears. He is your right hand man and will never let you down. Anything goes down in your home and The Hub will make sure you are the first to know.
Maybe you've also been thinking... 'But how do I install it, I'm not technical!' Or 'Won't it cost alot of money' Or 'What if I buy it to DIY and decide I can't do it?'. We've got it all covered! The Fibaro Home Intelligence product suite covers all the bases and does in such a simple way, it's really easy to DIY or any Electrician could come in cold and help you sort it out. We can even help you remotely over the internet by connecting to your Hub. Firstly, you can start with one hub and one senso for as little as £280. This would give you alerts about temperature, motion, intruders and weather / light levels. This is the most basic start but all you need to do then is a add a few more sensors like door and window sensors and few light switch dimmers and all of a sudden you can build up some really nice convenient scenes. The sensors, for the most part, are wireless. The Hub plugs into your internet router and that's it. The control devices are simple to connect, and require fitting in behind existing light switches with a very slight wiring re-arrangement. There is nothing extra to install, just a slight adjustment. It's all designed to be fitted with no mess, no fuss and no complication.