The time for smart homes is now – Khaleej Times


Worried that your elderly parents are doing ok? Have the kids come home safely from school? Is the air conditioning turned off in the master bedroom?

For homeowners that who have invested in a smart home, worries such as these will soon be a thing of the past. The recent breakthroughs in adaptive home technology are slowly gaining steam across the UAE, and fueling a whole generation of individuals eager to see their homes turn into something straight out of a science fiction movie.

Brian Hull, managing director of ABB Oman and Bahrain, explained that a smart home today is one which is energy efficient and adaptive of the changes in environment. Speaking in a session on the second day of the 2016 Global Women’s Forum in Dubai, Hull further explained that most smart homes today produce their own energy and provide home owners with a number of safety features.

Also speaking at the session was Amal Koshak, senior manager of marketing communications at the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA), who highlighted the importance of promoting the sustainable consumption of energy, especially in light of Dubai’s vision to become a smart city.

“Dubai has envisioned three initiatives to promote the culture of sustainability. These include the work being done at Shams Dubai, smart application via smart energy grids, and providing the infrastructure for charging stations of electrical vehicles,” she said. 

Asked about what motivates people to invest in a smart home, Hull listed to a number of factors such as greater home security, energy saving, ease of use, eco-friendliness, and convenience. “This is a segment that businesses today can’t afford to ignore. The market is maturing and has moved on from people being early adopters. The energy grids in the region need to get smarter since the electricity will begin to flow both ways. The building blocks are already there, as is the connectivity to the web. Providers have the various sensors necessary for smart homes, and the time for them is now.”

Hull also touched on the role that children will play in influencing their parents’ decision to invest in a smart home. “Today, you can actually see a number of toy companies selling toys that educate children on smart homes and clean energy, such as Lego. Even Barbie has a voice activated smart home, and you can bet that your daughter will reason that if it is good enough for Barbie, then it should be good enough for you.” 

rohma@khaleejtimes.com






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