- freely available
Energies 2016, 9(5), 348; doi:10.3390/en9050348
Abstract: In the actual era of smart homes and smart grids, advanced technological systems that allow the automation of domestic tasks are developing rapidly. There are numerous technologies and applications that can be installed in smart homes today. They enable communication between home appliances and users, and enhance home appliances’ automation, monitoring and remote control capabilities. This review article, by introducing the concept of the smart home and the advent of the smart grid, investigates technologies for smart homes. The technical descriptions of the systems are presented and point out advantages and disadvantages of each technology and product today available on the market. Barriers, challenges, benefits and future trends regarding the technologies and the role of users have also been discussed.
2. State of the Art
2.1. The Advent of Smart Homes
- Automation: the ability to accommodate automatic devices or perform automatic functions;
- Multi-functionality: the ability to perform various duties or generate different outcomes;
- Adaptability: the ability to learn, predict and meet the needs of users;
- Interactivity: the ability to allow the interaction among users;
- Efficiency: the ability to perform functions in a convenient manner that saves time and costs.
2.2. The Advent of the Smart Grid: A Communication Method for Smart Homes to Overcome Traditional Power Grids
2.3. The Role of the ICTs in Smart Homes and the Smart Grid
2.4. The New Role of the Users
3. Aim of the Work
4. Classification Criteria for the Selection of Smart Home Technologies
- Data collection: the technology allows the collection of all relevant data and provides access to them;
- Data processing: the technology allows the processing and analyzing of relevant data and can combine them;
- Data representation: the technology allows the relevant data to be made accessible to the users;
- Control and interaction capabilities: the technology enables users to access the status and monitor the functions of related technologies (bidirectional communication and interaction).
- Direct: the more immediate the feedback is, the more effective it is, but it requires a certain degree of knowledge and preparation from users;
- Personalized: the way of presenting data is customized to end-users’ needs;
- Comparable: end-users can compare their actual electricity usage with benchmarks as well as with their historical data;
- Flexible: the feedback technology needs to be continually improved, in response to users’ suggestions and requests.
- Systemic: the house exists in a systemic context, and the data, retrieved by means of a smart grid, are presented at an individual household level and compared with the average system performance .
- Gamification: the feedback is presented by using elements and concepts that are typical in computer games and is often integrated in a graphical user interface (GUI).
5. Review of the Technologies for Smart Homes
- Integrated wireless technology (IWT);
- Home energy management system (HEMS);
- Smart home micro-computers (SHMC);
- Home automation (SHS/HA).
5.1. Integrated Wireless Technology and Network
5.2. Home Energy Management
- The increased savings for both users and utilities providers;
- A reduced peak-to-average ratio and peak loads;
- They can include local energy production from renewable sources;
- They allows the household to be inserted in a systemic context, as a separate local grid, and allow it to be connected to the outside world, i.e., creates a smart grid;
- They allow for historical comparisons of home energy usage.
5.3. Smart Home Micro-Computers
5.4. Home Automation Systems
6.1. Challenges Related to Smart Home Technologies
6.2. Challenges, Benefits, and Motivations Related to the Users
- Rationalizing the amount of energy required from controllable loads: smart grids enable providers to better control and plan production and to adjust the price levels of electricity. Previous studies have systematized approaches to home energy management, which may belong to one or any mix of the following three categories: (i) a technology-oriented approach; (ii) an economically-oriented approach or (iii) an environmentally-oriented approach.
- Wisely scheduling running times for smart appliances that are likely to be shifted in time. Households’ involvement in cutting their overall energy demand and the evening peaks in energy usage is still being explored. Currently, a lot of interest is being directed to making homes more flexible energy users. This flexibility aims to modify households’ load shape thanks to feedback on real-time energy usage and an indication from them of which tariff information they found useful in relation to optimizing their energy costs.
- Turning themselves into potential carbon-free generators of energy, through the use of renewable resources: so far, the focus of smart grid technologies has been on integrating RES into the grid to reduce the cost of power generation. Integrating these resources requires storage systems. Load/generation shifting can be used by customers, utility providers, or renewable power producers to take advantage of the different electricity rates available at various times of the day .
6.3. Barriers and Futures Trends
Conflicts of Interest
|ACORD-FI||appliance coordination with feed|
|AiSEG||artificial intelligence and smart energy gateway|
|CPP||critical peak pricing|
|CPU||central processing unit|
|DD||dashboard or display device|
|DsT||decision support tool|
|EMU||energy management unit|
|GSM/GPRS||global system mobile|
|GUI||graphical users interface|
|HAN||home area network|
|HEMS||home energy management system|
|IPPC||intergovernmental panel on climate change|
|ICTs||information and communication technologies|
|IBR||inclining block rates|
|IPMR||intelligent power management rostrum|
|IWT||integrated wireless technology|
|MAC||medium access control|
|NAN||neighborhood area networks|
|OLM||optimum load management|
|OREM||optimization-based residential energy management|
|RFID||radio frequency identification|
|REF||renewable energy source|
|RTP||real time pricing|
|SHMC||smart home micro-computers|
|SHS/HA||smart home systems/home automation|
|ToU||time of use|
|WAN||wide area network|
|WSHAN||wireless sensor home area network|
|WSN||wireless sensor networks|
|xDSL||digital subscriber lines|
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|Symstems and Technologies||Company||Country||Automation||Visualization||Wireless Protocol||Commercial Availability||Source Availability Model|
|The Energy Navigator||Germany||√||√||√||–||–||√||–||–||–||–||–||–||–||–||√||–||√||–||√|
|Banana Pi||United Kingdom||–||–||–||√||–||√||–||√||–||–||–||–||–||√||–||–||√||√||–|
|Raspberry Pi||United Kingdom||–||–||–||√||–||√||–||√||–||–||–||–||–||√||–||–||√||√||–|
|SHS/HA||British Gas||United Kingdom||–||√||–||–||–||√||√||–||–||–||–||–||√||–||–||–||√||√||–|
|GE Brillion Technology||USA||√||–||–||–||–||–||√||–||–||–||–||–||–||√||–||–||√||√||–|
|LGSmart Thinq||South Korea||√||√||–||–||√||–||√||–||–||–||–||√||–||–||√||–||√|
|Samsung SmartThings||South Korea||√||–||–||–||–||–||√||–||–||–||–||–||–||√||–||√||–||–||√|
|Vera smarter home control||China||–||–||–||–||√||–||–||√||√||–||–||–||√||√||–||–||√||–||√|
|IWT||Description and Main Features||Max Transmission Speed/Operation Range||Transmission Distance||Standard||Internet Protocol (IP) Support||Adoption Rate||Strengths||Reference|
|6LoWPAN||(1) Its full name is IPv6 over Low-Power Wireless Personal Area Networks;|
(2) It is a networking technology that allows IPv6 packets to be carried efficiently within small link layer frames, such as those defined by IEEE 802.15.4;
(3) It enables IEEE 802.15.4 (IEEE * subcommittee for low rate WPAN) and IPv6 to work together in order to achieve IP enabled low-power networks of small devices including sensors, controllers etc.;
(4) The standard IETF RFC 4944 describes the mechanism of combining IP and WPAN technologies
|250 kbps, 2.4 GHz; |
40 kbps, 915 MHz; 20 kbps, 868 MHz;
|Up to 200 m||IETF RFC 4944;|
|IPv6||Medium||(1) Benefits of both IP and Bluetooth;|
(2) Low energy usage
|Bluetooth||(1) It is wireless communications system used to exchange data over short distances;|
(2) It employs short-wave length radio transmission in the Industrial, scientific and medical (ISM) band (2400–2480 MHz);
(3) Its main features are low energy usage and fast data exchange as well as widespread availability
|721 kbps for v1;|
2.1 Mbps for v2.0 + EDR **;
24 Mbps for v3 + HS ***;
25 Mbps for v4
|10 m typical||IEEE 802.15.1||–||Extremely high||(1) Ease of access;|
(2) No configuration requirement;Secure connection
|DASH7||(1) It is an open source wireless network protocol for sensors and actuators, which operates in the 433 MHz, 868 MHz and 915 MHz unlicensed ISM band/SRD band;It provides multi-year battery life;|
(2) It ranges of up to 2 km;
(3)It has low latency for connecting with moving things;
(4) It has a very small open source protocol stack
|200 kbps||0–500 m and 0.3–1 km||ISO/IEC 18000-7||Yes||Medium||(1) It penetrates concrete and water;|
(2) It transmits and receives over very long ranges without requiring a large power draw on a battery
|(5) It has AES 128-bit shared key encryption support;|
(6) It has a data transfer of up to 167 kbit/s;
(7) DASH7 Alliance Protocol is the name of the technology promoted by the non-profit consortium called the DASH7 Alliance
|EnOcean Technology||(1) It is an innovative energy harvesting wireless technology with the smallest amount of energy from their environment;|
(2) It consists of wireless technology components for self-powered wireless control, signalling and monitoring of systems
|It is on the 868.3 or 315 MHz frequency||30 m (in-doors)||ISO/IEC 14543-3-1; IEEE 802.15.4||Yes||Medium||(1) Energy management and highly efficient energy storage; |
(2) It uses wireless standards optimized for solutions with ultra-low power consumption.
|GSM||(1) Global system mobile (GSM/GPRS) is a mobile phone communication that operates in geographical cells. The sizes of these cells depends on the required need for traffic distribution and demand; |
(2) It is better known as a mobile wireless system and it operates at either 900 MHz or 1800 MHz frequency band
|270 kbps||Several kilometers||Gaussian Minimum Shift Keying (GMSK)||Yes, static and dynamic IP||Widely adopted||(1) Low cost;|
(2) High-quality signal;
(3) High compatibility
|MyriaNed||(1) It is a self-organizing, gossiping wireless sensor network (WSN) platform;|
(2) It uses an epidemic communication style based on standard radio broadcasting;
(3) It is inspired by biological processes where many nodes (e.g., birds, ants, cells) operate in large distributed systems (flocks, organized colonies, organisms);
(4) Its technology is a decentralized system based on bottom up approach, where the behavior of a single element (node) will result in emerging behavior of the system (application)
|2.4 GHz radio frequency; |
868 MHz radio frequency;
Other frequencies are under development
|Several meters||MyriaNed GOSSIP protocol; MAC **** protocol||Yes||Medium/low: the system is developing||(1) Low energy usage;|
(2) Low cost;
|NeuRFon™ Netform||(1) It is a self-organizing wireless network for low data rate, low-power fixed sensor nodes; |
(2) The protocol utilizes a logical backbone architecture through which data communication between all the network nodes are supported by hierarchical routing
|250 kbps||20 m||IEEE 802.15.4; MAC **** protocol||–||Medium||(1) Low data rate; |
(2) Low energy usage
|RFID||(1) Radio frequency identification (RFID) is a system that transmits the objects identity wirelessly by radio waves;|
(2) It can be categorized based on its used frequency range: low (124–135 KHz), high (13.56 MHz) and ultra-high frequency (860–960 MHz)
|Low 124-135 KHz; |
High 13.56 MHz;
Ultra-high 860–960 MHz
|Low 30 cm;
High 1.5 m;
Ultra-high 1–15 m
|Various standards||Yes||Widely adopted||(1) Stable technology; |
(2) Continue evolution;
(3) Open architectures becoming increasingly available
|UWB||(1) It has recently attracted much attention as an indoor short-range high-speed wireless communication ;|
(2) One of the most interesting characteristics is that its bandwidth is over 110 Mbps (up to 480 Mbps), which can satisfy most of the multimedia applications such as audio and video delivery in home networking;
(3) It can also act as a wireless cable replacement of high speed serial bus such as USB 2.0 and IEEE 1394
|100 Mbps||10 m||802.15.3a||Yes||Medium||(1) Indoor short-range high-speed; |
(2) Its bandwidth satisfies most of the multimedia applications
|Wi-Fi||(1) It is a very popular technology used in HANs, mobile phones, personal computers and many other electronic devices; |
(2) Its main feature is the existing wide support: almost every new electronic device, be it a personal computer, laptop, game console or a peripheral device, comes with installed Wi-Fi technology;
|300 Mbps||100 m||IEEE 802.11||IPv6||Extremely high||High speed mature standard|||
|(3) It is generally upper layer protocol with IP being the most predominant protocol, allowing communications over the internet without needing a protocol translator|
|WLAN||(1) Wireless local area network (WLAN) employs the spread spectrum technology, so that users can occupy the same frequency bands while causing minimal interference to each other;|
(2) Also known as Wireless Ethernet, it is able to provide robust communications with low latency and capable of point-to-point as well as point-to-multi-point transmissions
|150 Mbps||250 m||IEEE 802.11||IPv6||Extremely high||Low interference from users|||
|Z-Wave||(1) It is a proprietary standard intended exclusively for remote control applications in residential and business areas; |
(2) This protocol works at 868 MHz in Europe and 908 MHz ISM band in USA;
(3) It has typically 30 min door range, which extends up to 100 m outdoors;
(4) Mesh networking is employed in Z-Wave, essentially meaning an unlimited range;
(5) The main advantages of this technology comes from simple command structure, freedom from household interference, low-band width control medium and IP support
|100 kbps||30 m indoor;
100 m outdoor
|Proprietary||Yes||Medium||No interference from household devices|||
|ZigBee||(1) It is a wireless mesh network that proved to be very efficient and cost effective; |
(2) It offers low data rate for Personal area networks (PANs);
(3) It can be used broadly in device control, reliable messaging, home and building automation, consumer electronics, remote monitoring, health care, and many other areas
|250 kbps (2.4 GHz); |
40 kbps (915 MHz)
|10–75 m||IEEE 802.15.4||IPv6 only in SEP2||Widely adopted||Low cost, low power usage, high number of nodes||[62,65,66]|
|Control devices||Centralized||It allows communicating with multiple appliances in the home environment. The users can manage them from a single location and often using multiple inputs|
|Device/Appliance-Level||User controls a single device or function and standalone control|
|On-Board (automated on appliance level)||Control functionality integrated in the device|
|Graphical User Interfaces||Home Energy Display||Stand-alone in home display; often portable|
|Web Dashboard/Portal||Online interface accessible from any Internet-enabled device|
|Smartphone Application||Device-specific interfaces for iPhones, Android phones, and others|
|Others (e.g., TV)|
|Enabling Technologies||Sensing||Acquisition of dynamic variables within the home environment|
|Communications||Physical devices necessary to support the network|
|Communication Protocols||Standards that allow individual nodes within a network to communicate|
|Product Name||Main Features||Strengths||Weaknesses||Reference|
|CISCO||It provides energy management to industry of all sizes and homes. The service, called Cisco Energy Optimization Services, uses advanced technology to maximize energy and cost savings across the network and datacenters;||(1) Demand-response programs: utilities can significantly improve grid capacity and asset usage at peak times by reducing the load on generation and distribution; |
(2) The pricing programs, such as critical-peak and time-of-day, for reducing and shifting the power demand have been embedded
|The system has not been integrated in the CISCO Connected Grid Energy Management system|||
|DigitalSTROM||It is a system that connects all home electronic devices through the existing power lines. It includes a control system and smart metering||(1) The system works using the existing electric power lines of the house; |
(2) The components of the system are largely invisible and they could be applied on any equipment of the house that works with electricity;
(3) There are many apps compatible with the system
|(1) The system works well only with dedicated apps; |
(2) The system cannot be used for managing the energy of an entire district
|Dreamwatts®||It is a web-enabled, user-friendly HEMS for monitoring and controlling the energy usages of buildings||(1) The system is open source and accessible from everywhere; |
(2) The system helps to demonstrate the importance of access to energy information;
(3) The system has user-friendly interface, low cost monitoring and control system;
(4) It provides the lowest cost of ownership of any product on the market
|The system is an energy monitoring tool that doesn’t allow any changes by the users|||
|e-GOTHAM||It is an open smart-grid system that allows users to manage components within a micro-grid, and to operate in collaboration with the overall smart grid||(1) The system has multiple local controllers;|
(2) It offers communication among producers, users, a common information model, databases and algorithms in order to coordinate the appliances via the user applications
|(1) The system has only been tested in a large scale living lab for Smart Grid activities in the community of Steinkjer (Norway); |
(2) The system needs to become more flexible and scalable in order to be used in industrial or tertiary sector
|EmonCMS||It is a free app for processing, logging and visualizing energy usage, temperature and environmental data||(1) The users can have full control of the energy data;|
(2) The app can be install on a private server or on the hosted service;
(3) Input processing allows for conversion and processing before storage. There are over 23 different input processes from simple calibration to power data, and can be represented with an histogram;
(4) Zoom through large data-set, compare multiple datasets by using the multi-graph visualization builder;
(5) The system could be installed directly by the users
|The system doesn’t allow any remote control for managing and controlling the energy of the house as well as to create a users’ schedule in order to setting the turn on/off time of the home equipment|||
|Energy Team’s Energy Data Collector Tool||(1) The tool is constituted of (i) an integrated web server for the configuration of the system and data analysis; and (ii) a gateway to collect, store and send data to a the server; |
(2) It visualizes energy usage trough a web application
|(1) It can manage hundreds of sensors and up to 1600 measures;|
(2) Direct Wi-Fi connection to the device even with no web platforms available;
(3) HTML 5 web application, optimized for mobile devices that automatically adapts to the equipment used;
(4) 8 GB of local storage memory
|(1) The system is an energy monitoring tool that doesn’t allow any direct changes by the users; |
(2) Design of components optimized for industrial applications and not for home installation;
(3) A touchscreen is not available to enhance the user’s experience
|Google PowerMeter||It is an energy monitoring utility including the visualization of energy usage, the possibility to share information and energy saving tips||(1) The system is open source and accessible from everywhere; |
(2) The system helps to demonstrate the importance of access to energy information;
(3) The system allows to personalize recommendations in order to save energy
|(1) The system is an energy monitoring tool that doesn’t allow any changes by the users; |
(2) The system need more development
|Savant||The Savant HEMS allows setting and controlling the energy usages of the home from a GUI on electronic devices||(1) The system permits the users to monitor energy usage and production in real time, including historical data of multiple energy management devices; |
(2) Users can reduce energy usage and costs by controlling how and when specific devices use power-particularly during peak pricing or load periods
|(1) This system requires professional installation; |
(2) The company does not offer technical support of any kind
|SMARTHEMS™||Panasonic has developed its own HEMS. It uses Artificial Intelligence and Smart Energy Gateway (AiSEG) to manage energy generation, storage and savings equipment||(1) The system allows to promote energy savings by visualizing energy usages. It makes the flow of energy throughout the entire home visible by exchanging information with home appliances; |
(2) By using smartphone, TV, and other equipment, residents can check the energy used by each home appliance and in each room
|The system has not been integrated in a smart grid yet|||
|The Energy Navigator platform||(1) It is a web-based platform of a building management system; |
(2) It automatically creates reports to inform other users about the current system status, and potential performance issues of the building
|(1) It allows monitoring and specify the behavior of a building management system;|
(2) The user will be able to create custom analyses for the monitored building;
(3) The platform was designed for multiuser access (data import, preprocessing, analysis reporting and specification);
(4) It establishes the concept of templates for every artifact: an user can specify his/her knowledge once at the beginning and use the templates easily for every building that he/she operates or manages
|Some function are more suitable for energy expert: for example they can use the platform to visualize the imported data with multiple plot types, e.g. line plots, scatter plots or carpet plots|||
|Product Name||Main Features||Strengths||Weaknesses||Reference|
|Arduino||(1) It is an open-source electronics platform equipped with hardware and software; |
(2) It senses the environment by receiving inputs from many sensors, and affects its surroundings by controlling lights, motors, and other actuators
|(1) High flexibility and compatibility with the different kind of sensors; |
(2) It is intended for anyone making interactive projects
|(1) All these systems require the user to have some technical background and electronics basics; |
(2) It also requires time to be learned and become expert in assembling and using it. However, many tutorials and detailed information about their assembly and use are free available on line;
(3) Another barrier is constituted by their commercial price that can also reach thousands of euros
|Banana Pi||(1) It is a single-board computer; |
(2) It can serve as a platform to make many applications for different purposes
|(1) It targets to be a cheap, small and flexible enough computer for daily life;|
(2) It is built with ARM Cortex-A7 Dual-core CPU and Mali400MP2 GPU and open source software;
(3) Most of common extension accessories Including LCD panel, touch screen, camera module, UART console and GPIO control pins are accessible from Banana Pi on-board connectors and headers
|BeagleBone Black||(1) It is an open hardware micro-computer similar to both Raspberry Pi and Banana Pi;|
(2) It has a MR Cortex-A8 processor. It is equipped with Ubuntu and Android;
(3) It is an open hardware, community-supported embedded computer for developers and hobbyists
|(1) High flexibility and compatibility with the different kind of sensors; |
(2) It is intended for anyone making interactive projects
|Raspberry Pi||It is a capable credit-card sized computer that allows developing electronics projects||(1) Ability to interact with the outside world, and has been used in a wide array of digital maker projects, from music machines and parent detectors to weather stations and tweeting birdhouses with infra-red cameras; |
(2) Could be used by people of all ages;
(3) Its challenge is to be used by people of all ages to explore computing and to learn how to program in languages like Scratch and Python and how to manipulate the electronic world around them
|Libelium Waspmote||(1) It is an advanced mote for Wireless sensor networks (WSN); |
(2) It allows a total control over the hardware devices. It could be connected with any kind of sensor
|(1) It is robust and waterproof; |
(2) It supports the following protocols: ZigBee, Wi-Fi, LoRaWAN, LoRa, Sigfox;
(3) It has a graphical and intuitive programming interface
|Product Name||Main Features||Strengths||Weaknesses||Reference|
|British Gas Smarter living & Energy saving—Smart meters||It is a smart home energy monitoring and controlling system developed by British Gas for their customers in order to keep a better control of the energy bills||(1) It allows users to interact with home appliances and works with a smart energy monitor that can be placed anywhere in the home; |
(2) It shows the used energy, gas and electricity, as well as its cost
|It is a system developed by the British Gas company and therefore it is linked to a contract|||
|Control4Home Automation||It is a HA system that allows the products and devices that the users already have and use every day, work together||(1) Compatible with any other smart technology; |
(2) User-friendly control by a dedicated app
|(1) The system allows the users to control lights, audio and security in the house, but not monitoring the energy usage and production; |
(2) The system must be installed professionally by an authorized dealer;
(3) It works only with internet connection and only with families of peripherals that are compatible with the controllers in this system are Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, KNX, Z-Wave and ZigBee;
(4) It offers limited mobile access functionality with its base system setup;
(5) The Help & Support section of the system is poorly performed
|Creston Home Automation & Entertainment||Complete control of home appliances: turn on TVs, lights, adjust thermostats, fish tank or sauna, etc.||(1) The simplicity of the system and the user-friendly GUI; |
(2) It is fully compatible with media players and with home automation peripherals;
(3) Customers’ service can support the users all the time. Moreover, the user manual, FAQs, email support, phone support and tutorials are available
|(1) The system allows the users to control lights, audio and security in the house, but not monitoring the energy usages and production; |
(2) Many of the peripherals are specifically designed to work with Crestron hardware controllers;
(3) The home automation system installation must be set by professionals. Only after the installation, the users can add compatible devices;
(4) It does not have a live chat support option or a user forum
|General Electric Brillion Technology||It allows the user to interact with their smart home appliances using smartphones||It allows the user to monitor and control appliances anytime, anywhere with a smartphone app||(1) It only works with General Electric appliances; |
(2) It is closed sourced
|HomeSeer HS3||It is a home HA system relatively easy to use, but it takes time to master. It’s highly compatible with a variety of home-control technologies and gives a wide range of software compatibility as well||(1) Compatible with a variety of others systems and programs; |
(2) Online store available;
(3) It is compatible with the most popular operating systems;
(4) The software gives you the option to create simple or complex programs to help you get the level of customization you desire for your smart home. These programs can activate automatically, manually and even using voice control;
(5) It is offers a strong customer support such as video tutorials, telephone support and live chat, as well as user manual and an online knowledgebase and active community forum; (6) The system works also without internet connection
|(1) It does not offer a home security monitoring subscription; |
(2) The Pro version requires an extra payment;
(3) It doesn’t support Bluetooth, KNX and ZigBee control technologies
|Honda Smart Home US||It is a hardware and software system that monitors, controls and optimizes electrical generation and usage throughout the home micro-grid||(1) The HA system stores solar energy generated during the day for use at night, when household demand typically peaks and electric vehicles are usually charged; |
(2) Capability of ‘listening’ to the grid to ensure only draws power at the most carbon-efficient times;
(3) Solar energy and plug-in electric vehicles can join forces to provide zero carbon living and mobility
|It is not compatible with other smart technologies systems|||
|iHome or Apple HomeKit||It has not been presented yet, but Apple has announced that the system will be released along with IOS8. However, several iHome products are already available in the market||(1) It would use the location and the movements’ data from devices using GPS technology to anticipate occupants’ upcoming actions by providing an intelligent reaction; |
(2) A central hub device will allow connecting all the home appliances
|(1) It has not been available on the market yet; |
(2) It only works with Whirlpool appliances;
(3) It is closed sourced
|Iris||It is a simple, customizable smart home management system by connecting with compatible smart devices through a single app||The system is easy to control and has great software compatibility||(1) It does not interact with media players; |
(2) It does not natively support Wi-Fi;
(3) The basic plan does not allow advanced control to create rules and programs across devices
|KNX||It is an intelligent home and building control that enables the combination of different technologies and systems||(1) It is a worldwide open standard; |
(2) It is a flexible system able to combine different technologies, appliances and systems from different manufacturers within one system
|The system is expensive|||
|LG Smart Thinq™||It is a HA system constituted by all the home appliances that can communicate each other||(1) It allows user to monitor and control appliances anytime, anywhere with a smartphone app; |
(2) It provides personal suggestions customized to the users habits, lifestyle and schedule to save energy and improve efficiency
(3) The system communicates with the customers center or transmits data over Wi-Fi to the smartphone app for quick and easy diagnosis and solutions in case of malfunctioning
|(1) It only works with LG appliances; |
(2) It is closed sourced
|LonWorks||LonWorks is a standard network in buildings market with a number of Building Automation Systems suppliers standardizing on LON including Siemens Building Systems and Honeywell||(1) LonWorks is a standard technology for many of the global standards organizations including ASHRAE, IEEE, ANSI, SEMI and others; |
(2) It is used for the automation of various functions within buildings such as lighting and HVAC
|It was mostly applied in commercial buildings because its slow development during the last few years|||
|Nexia||The system works to monitor and improve home energy usage patterns and by integrating security components such as security cameras, entry sensors and door locks||(1) It is easy to use given its relatively few features; |
(2) It does not require professional help to install, unless the users use one of the thermostats system controller coupled with the system
|(1) The system does not support peripherals other than Z-Wave; |
(2) The system does not work with window shading, such as blind and curtain motors, or home theater systems;
(3) The system does not offer any compatibility with other smart home control technologies
|OpenHAB||Easy integration with different HA systems||(1) The system is fully open source; |
(2) No remote access is possible, if it is not desired;
(3) Everything works nicely within the intranet and does not even require an Internet connection;
(4) The system is easily extensible to integrate new devices;
(5) It can be run on any device that is capable of running a Java virtual machine
|The system allows the users to control lights, audio and security in the house, but not monitoring the energy usage and production|||
|Panasonic smart appliance||It is a HA system constituted by all the home appliances that can communicate each other||It allows the user to control and manage their smart appliances and power usage. They can be remotely controlled and set on pause when energy costs are high||(1) It only works with Panasonic appliances; |
(2) It is closed sourced
|Samsung SmartThings||(1) It is a complete home monitoring and security solution; |
(2) It has to be coupled with a Hub system
|The system gives you several ways to take control of your smart home||(1) The use of the app helps the system to stay simple, but also make remote access using a PC or Mac impossible; |
(2) It does not support home audio functionality, as well as voice control or home security monitoring features
|Staples Connect||It allows to connect appliances and systems like lighting, heating and air-conditioning, and even window shading may be all controlled using one of the dedicated app||(1) The system is compatible with many peripherals; |
(2) It also has a security control;
(3) It has a strong technical support services such as email, live chat and telephone, user forum and FAQs;
(4) The system is principally available online
|(1) It does not support legacy HA protocols; |
(2) It does not have a user manual;
(3) It is not compatible with home theater systems;
(4) It does not support control technologies like Insteon, KNX, UPB or X10
|UPnP||It is defined as universal architecture for pervasive peer-to-peer network connectivity of intelligent appliances, devices and computers||(1) Universal means that no device drivers are required, but only common protocols are used; |
(2) It allows true plug-and-play compatibility with all UPnP enabled devices
|It could cause heavy network traffic. Every device will communicate with any other device on the network, and in such ways slow the network down (depends on the bandwidth)|||
|Vera smarter home control||It offers smart home controllers with good device and software compatibility||(1) The best feature is its support of remote access: the MiOS software. It allows connecting the system with any devices, which have a friendly GUI helping the users to achieve maximum control and energy efficiency; |
(2) The support service works by email, telephone and live chat
|(1) It is not compatible with home theater systems; |
(2) It also does not support voice control technology
|WeBee||It is an app that allows to be connected to all the appliances in the smart home||(1) It provides personal suggestions customized to the users habits, lifestyle and schedule in order to save energy and improve efficiency;|
(2) Compatible with any other smart technology
|Whirlpool Smart appliances||It is a HA system constituted by all the home appliances that can communicate each other||It enables the user of having full control over the smart appliances and can be set on pause when the energy costs are high||(1) It only works with Whirlpool appliances; |
(2) It is closed sourced
|Wink||(1) The system works with the most common home control technologies;|
(2) It has to be coupled with a Hub system
|(1) The system is compatible with many devices of different brands;|
(2) It is easy to use for connecting different devices
|The Hub Wi-Fi sometimes does not work properly|||
© 2016 by the authors; licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY) license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).