Podcast: What you really need to know before buying connected devices

Is my colleague Kevin Tofel's home a business?

In my time talking to people about the internet of things, we sometimes get so excited about the possibilities of the technology that we forget about the consumer who has to install it or has their own vision for connected living that they are trying to implement. So this week I brought my colleague Kevin Tofel onto the show to discuss how consumers should literally buy into the internet of things.

Tofel is our gadget and mobile device reporter (he has a podcast too!), and has been trying connected devices in his home (pictured) since 2010, so he has hands on experience setting up a home automation system using an Insteon-based system. But as, we discuss on the podcast, this limits the connected devices he brings into his home and it doesn’t work with his Nest thermostat for example. He offers some good tips for those planning their own connected homes such as planning ahead, picking a protocol and thinking about what you really want to achieve. Toward the end we even debate the merits of apps versus voice and gesture controls for telling our smart homes what to do.

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Show notes:
Host: Stacey Higginbotham
Guest: Kevin Tofel

  • Kevin’s 41 solar panels aren’t connected to his Nest thermostat. Should they be?
  • We offer two practical considerations consumers must think about before buying connected devices. Hint, one is the protocols you’ll be using.
  • Why you need to plan ahead when buying connected devices for your home.
  • Kevin predicts the death of the remote control and I complain about having too many apps.

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