Making A Home Smart
Linking in-home devices to create communication with smart device
- By Juan M. López
- Mar 01, 2017
Who values a smart home? According to a recent
survey, most Americans do. Eighty-seven percent
of us acknowledge the worth of a smart home –
and it’s not limited to just millennials or the techsavvy.
Thirty-three percent of adults between 35
and 54, and 24 percent of those older than 55 years own smart-home
technology. But what really makes a smart home “smart?”
Most homeowners say you need to have at least three of these four
things: security locks/alarm systems, temperature control, lighting,
and safety devices like fire or carbon monoxide detectors – all linked
to a smart device. As a security dealer or integrator, I know you’ve got
the security system part figured out, but what about the rest? How
can you help your customers achieve the smart home they want? The
answer might surprise you.
In fact, the answer is a frequently used smart-home device: a connected
garage door opener.
More than smart door locks, network security cameras or even
smart thermostats, more homeowners control a connected garage
door opener through a smartphone app than any of these devices.
That’s why when you’re consulting with your customers, it’s important
to make a connected garage door opener part of your offering. It
becomes even more important when you realize that with the right
accessories, that connected garage door opener can also enable your
customers to control home lighting and monitor temperature, the key
factors that make a up a smart home.
CONNECTED GARAGE DOOR OPENERS
The benefits of connected home technology in the garage are obvious.
Your customers most likely already receive smartphone alerts on
breaking news or weather, but a connected garage door opener can
tell them when their garage door opens, closes, or is left open accidently.
When did their kids enter the garage after school? They’ll
There are after-market products available which can turn most
any brand of garage door opener into a connected opener. LiftMaster’s
MyQ Garage, for example, installs in minutes and works with
home Wi-Fi to achieve connectivity. It also works with the free MyQ
app for smartphone control.
If a customer wants to install a new, connected garage door
opener, start with one with built-in Wi-Fi. It makes it easy to make
the initial connection to the internet, plus it doesn’t require another
other equipment to buy like an internet gateway device and can easily
connect to the app. The app easily integrates with other accessory
devices such as remote light controls and remote light switches to
be able to control home lighting. There are other advantages to a
new garage door opener like increased quiet, especially with belt
drive units, battery backup in case of power outages, and, of course,
With the MyQ app and a Nest Learning Thermostat, your customers
can open the garage door when they arrive and the connected
garage door opener can tell their Nest Thermostat they’re home.
When they close the garage door on their way out, the thermostat
will go into Away mode, so they don’t waste energy heating or cooling
an empty home.
SECURITY AND SAFETY
A dark home could signal to unwanted visitors that homeowners are
away. The connected garage door opener can work with remote devices
to control home lighting. Your customers can simply plug in
any lamp inside their house to the device and control it with their
smartphone. With the MyQ app, they can also easily and conveniently
schedule lights to go on and off whenever they choose.
More than 70 percent of homeowners use the garage as the main
access point to the home, making safety and security a top priority.
With Nest Cam, homeowners can have an added security element.
While the app alerts users of garage door activity via smart phone
push notifications, with Nest Cam, users can also access a video feed
of what’s happening in the garage the moment the garage door is activated,
allowing for enhanced security and peace-of-mind.
This article originally appeared in the March 2017 issue of Security Today.
Juan M. López is the director of marketing, connectivity and controls at LiftMaster.