In 2011, Google engineers introduced android home automation system. The most interesting conceptual demo was probably just touching the CD to the CD player and all of the songs were immediately ready to play after regular download. After that many individual hobbyists and companies launched home automation products which can be controlled right from your smart phone. The tagline was usually every device in your home is one click away. In 2014, maybe we should say one voice command away.
Homey has launched a home automation system which looks like a science fiction scene from a movie only a few years earlier. The system responds to your voice commands. You do not have to worry about carrying any smart phone or installing any application. The amazing thing about homey is that it can tell you a Chuck Norris joke if you ask for it.
For a moment walk through this scene, when you get home, lights are on, music is playing and temperature is adjusted. When you leave the house, you do not have to worry about switching off lights, homey can do it for you. You can tell homey what you are planning for dinner and pre-heat the oven. Homey can wake you up in the morning with curtains lifting; morning news is on table and automatically prepared breakfast by your bedside. Amazing, right! It feels more like robo-servant Andrew from Bicentennial Man! Too much caring! This system has automated almost every human function and we are glad to have this system as long as it does not turn us into chubby humans due to laziness.
Homey uses eight radio modules using different protocols such as Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Zigbee, NFC and infrared. The modules are installed at home and connected with each other to form a network. It can be used right out of the box since nowadays most of the devices already use these protocols. However, some older devices can be configured with Homey. They have used advanced speech recognition algorithms similar to Google with changes of their own.
Another interesting feature is that apps can talk to each other. Not literally but programmatically over wireless connectivity! E.g. you want to play your friend’s favorite songs as soon as he comes in the house. The music player application will communicate with the door knob application. Your friend will value your friendship more!
If you are enthusiastic for the system, pledge now on Kickstarter and get the system with your very own open source kit to bring your ideas to life.