Smart energy meters are remote solutions for a smart home
Let us just say that all the devices in our life could connect to the internet. And we are not talking only about computers and smartphones, but also clocks, speakers, lights, doorbells, cameras, windows, window blinds, hot water heaters, appliances, cooking utensils, etc. All those devices can actually communicate with each other, send us information, and take our commands. No, it is no longer a science fiction, but so called the Internet of things, the key component of smart homes and home automation.
The expression means automating the ability to control items around the house, with just a simple push of a button (or a voice command). Some activities like setting up a lamp to turn on and off at our whish, are simple and relatively cheap. Others, like advanced surveillance cameras, easily require a more serious investment of time and money.
There are many smart home product categories, designed so we can control everything in our house, from lights, temperature, consumption, to locks and security in our home.
Smart energy meters
In general, smart energy meter is an electronic device that records consumption of energy and communicates the information to the electricity supplier.
Smart energy meters typically record our energy consumption hourly or more frequently, and report at least daily, directly to us, using smartphone technology. Communications from the meter to the network can be wireless, or via fixed wired connections, such as power line carrier. Wireless communication options in common use include cellular communications, Wi-Fi , wireless ad hoc networks over Wi-Fi, wireless mesh networks, low power long range wireless, ZigBee, and Wi-SUN.
A smart energy meter reduces energy consumption and decreases our electricity costs, which makes it a really clever way to control a single high-consumption device or the consumption of our entire home. As it lets us know which devices in our home are the biggest consumers, proves to be very helpful in cases when we are spending too much money on our utility bills. With their help we get to learn how much energy is used by each separate home appliance.
Modern smart meters for general use are normally sold with an app, which enables us to follow our consumption with our smartphone and remotely control it, turning devices on and off.
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A wireless light switch is a light switch that commands a light or some other home appliance, to turn itself off or on, instead of interrupting the power line going to the light fixture. There are different ways to communicate between the switch and the fixture.
By using radio transmission, we need a radio receiver that is typically wired or screwed into a fixture or a device, connected to the electrical system of the building or plugged into an outlet. The receiver's memory can be programmed by numerous means to respond to certain selected "switches" or remote control transmitters. Using the existing power lines, we plug the receiver into an outlet and a device is then plugged into the receiver.
Controlled by an app, a smart plug lets us turn on and off any appliance that plugs into a standard wall socket. We can simply plug it into any wall socket then plug our desired appliance into it. We can use it with a lamp, a TV, a cable box, a coffee machine, whatever we like and we can think of.
A smart plug usually comes with a corresponding app, so that we can control whatever we plug into it from a distance.