IoT for renters
If you rent an apartment or house, you may think that the Internet of Things (IoT) isn’t for you. Your landlord isn’t going to spring for a smart dishwasher, thermostat, or doorbell, and you don’t want to deal with the expense and hassle either. And who knows how long you’ll even be at your current address?
But just because you don’t own a home doesn’t mean you can’t dive into IoT! There are a growing number of easily installed, easily moved smart devices out there.
Here are six ways to get started and bring the magic of IoT into your rental.
1. Easily install smart lights
Smart lights are one of the easiest ways to experiment with IoT. You can quickly install smart bulbs like LIFX and Philips Hue (or a socket like Emberlight). Plus, it’s easy to take them with you when you move. If you’re swapping out bulbs, remember to hold onto those non-connected bulbs so you can put them back in when you leave.
Once your smart lights are in, use Applets to trigger changes throughout the day. Not only do these automatic changes save energy and set the mood, but they can also keep your stuff safe! Automating your lights can make it seem like you’re home even when the house is empty — no fancy security system required.
2. Get small appliances and portable displays that will move with you
Not all smart appliances require big budgets and professional installations. Swap out some of your small appliances for smart ones that are easy to set up and pack up. Then use Applets to connect these appliances with all your favorite services.
3. Turn anything into a connected device with smart plugs
Smart plugs turn your everyday electronics into Internet-connected devices that you can toggle on and off from anywhere. Set up Applets to turn your WeMo and D-Link smart plugs on and off based on triggers like time and location. You can try Applets that control your smart plugs via voice assistants, or even email.
4. Use button widgets instead of installing smart switches
Touchpads and fancy control panels are what many of us think of when we picture the home of the future, but most of us aren’t keen on messing about with our electrical systems — especially when we’re renting. Enter: the button widget! These give you a quick way to control your smart devices from your phone, without searching around for the right app. Here’s a widget how-to to get you started.
5. Become part of the IoT with wearables
The smartest living spaces change when you change. If you have a wearable, like a Fitbit, you can use your own actions to trigger your smart devices. Wake up, stretch, and relax in bed for a few minutes as your morning routine starts itself.
6. Create a portable control center with voice assistants
Going back and forth between different apps and controllers for all your devices is a pain. Instead, set up a voice assistant for a single control center. As their adoption grows, these devices are becoming increasingly affordable — and come in sizes, shapes, and colors that will fit any decor. Once you unbox your assistant of choice, Applets make it easy to customize your connections and build the smart apartment of your dreams.