August 08, 2021

High-Tech Living: Essential Smart Devices for Your Condo

Over 72.1 percent of the Philippine population uses a smartphone. WiFi usage also continues to increase in the country, according to a report by OpenSignal. It’s no surprise, as smartphones make your daily tasks easier, from communicating with loved ones to getting food deliveries. Smart technology has also extended to appliances, aptly called smart home devices.


Smart home devices let you control and communicate with your appliances and furniture through your smartphone, voice commands, and even gestures. Here are essential gadgets you should get to turn your My Enso Lofts unit into a smart home. 


Smart Hub

Some smart devices can work on their own. However, it’s better to control them through a single hub. This way, you don’t have to jump from one app to another. Popular smart hubs include:


  • Amazon Echo — Amazon’s Echo series of smart speakers are compatible with many smart home devices. This hub’s voice assistant, Alexa, is programmed to answer thousands of questions and act on a wide range of commands. Whether you want Alexa to play music, enumerate the holidays this month, or turn on your coffee maker, it’s sure to give you a fast response.


  • Google Nest — This brand also has a wide range of smart speakers that double as smart hubs. Its voice assistant is reliable and fast. Some reputable tech reviewers even find Google Assistant better at natural language recognition and information gathering than Amazon’s Alexa. 


  • Apple Homepod and TV — The Apple Homepod and TV platforms can act as smart hubs for your devices. It uses Siri as a voice assistant. An advantage of this platform is that it integrates easily with existing Apple devices like the iPad and iPhone. The downside of this system is its limited compatibility. It doesn’t work as well with Android-powered smart home devices.


A Good Router

Almost all smart home devices need to have stable internet access to function properly. They need to be linked to your home’s wireless router. Unfortunately, not all routers are built the same. The default ones that your internet service provider bundled with your connection may only provide a steady connection for a few devices at a time. 


You need a router that can handle more than five devices at a time. Pick one with at least a dual core-processor, multi-user, multiple-input, multiple-output (MU-MIMO) technology, multiple antennas, and beamforming. Together, these features provide fast and reliable internet connections for all your smart home devices. 


Smart Bulbs

If you’re just starting out on your smart home journey, smart bulbs are a must. They’re simple to use. Just screw them onto a socket, like you would a regular bulb, turn them on, and connect them to your hub. Just use your smartphone or even voice commands to turn them on and off. Some bulbs even have dimming and color-changing features!


Smart Plugs

Smart plugs let you control the power of your existing appliances remotely. They are also easy to use. Just plug them into your main outlet, connect them to your router and hub, and you’re ready to use them as a regular socket. 


Now, you can turn an appliance on or off with a voice command or a tap on your phone. Smart plugs also provide you with information about an appliance’s power consumption.


Smart TV

A Smart TV is another essential appliance for your smart home. You can download applications like Spotify, YouTube, and Netflix to turn it into a full-blown entertainment system. You can use your smartphone as a remote control to play videos and songs for you. Use voice commands to pause or rewind the video if you don’t want to take your hand off the popcorn.

Smart home devices make condo living easier and more convenient. However, setting up these gadgets can be tricky if you don’t have the proper knowledge and equipment. Use these entries as pointers to help you create a reliable and fast smart home system.


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