Smart home devices have the potential to keep us safer and more secure than ever before. Here’re 5 key smart home security trends to look out for in 2021.
Few things in life are as important as a happy, safe, secure home. That’s why home security devices are such a big deal.
While classic deadbolts, motion detectors, and the Monty Burns method are all tried and tested features of home security, a new wave of seriously impressive, high-tech smart security devices are on the horizon.
Here’s our pick of the biggest and best home security trends in 2021.
Touchless technology is all the rage and with good reason. The Covid-19 pandemic has changed the way we feel about contact surfaces and, with online shopping keeping delivery people busier than ever, having a touchless doorbell makes perfect sense.
Take the Arlo Touchless Video Doorbell. As soon as a visitor gets within a certain distance of the doorbell (set your preferred distance) it lets off a little chime to let you know someone’s at the door. The visitor will see a light on the doorbell, to let them know it’s been rung, while the video camera is activated enabling the homeowner to see who’s at the door. A winner at this year’s CES Awards, Arlo’s Touchless Doorbell is expected to announce its arrival around October 2021.
Alarm.com’s Touchless Video Doorbell arrived just before Arlo’s entry, kicking off the touchless trend. This one comes with a ‘stand here to ring doorbell’ mat, to help confused couriers, and automatically sends notifications to your phone when the doorbell is triggered. It features a 150-degree vertical field of view (HD and night vision), which Alarm.com claims is the ‘world’s first’ camera to have this viewing capacity and can connect to other smart devices such as smart lights, which can be programmed to turn on when the doorbell is triggered. Alarm.com’s Touchless Video Doorbell is already available in the US and will be available in Europe later this year.
From down-to-earth doorbells to high-flying drones. Hovering home security cameras have been much talked about since Amazon security company Ring announced its Always Home Cam – a next-level autonomous flying security drone that strikes fear into the hearts of burglars and anyone who’s ever watched Black Mirror's episode on drone surveillance.
The first smart security device to offer full home coverage, the Always Home Cam flies your chosen pre-programmed flight path, checking on your home when you’re away. So, if you’re the type to worry about whether you left the oven on or the window open, this could be a life-saver. Of course, there are privacy concerns, which some experts have pushed back on – the Always Home doesn’t have a mic to record audio and the camera is blocked when it’s in the dock, so it only records video when it’s in action. And few products are causing this kind of buzz – expect them to fly off the shelves when they arrive in late 2021.
Speaking of buzz, Sunflower Labs’ Bee drone is another notable security drone, although this one’s much more of an outdoor kinda guy. Tailor-made for big luxury properties (hello evil geniuses), the Bee is activated by preplaced motion sensors (sunflowers) that detect vibrations and feed live-stream video direct to your connected devices, before returning to base (the Hive) to crunch the numbers. Exclusive, yes – we’re talking a shade under €10,000 here – but still, a seriously impressive taste of things to come.
Tech often gets a bad rap, so it’s nice to find genuine life-changing gizmos on the horizon. One such gizmo is Nobi. At first glance, it may seem like a standard ceiling light. In fact, this smart security system takes fall detection beyond the pendant, with an equal focus on fall prevention.
As the video above shows, not only does Nobi sense movement in the home to set the lighting to personal preferences, it also uses advanced AI and machine learning to detect changes in mobility. So, if your granny suddenly finds it difficult to walk for whatever reason, Nobi will know and can alert you. It can also be linked to other smart devices like a smart scale or blood pressure monitor and send care notifications through an integrated app.
When a fall is detected, Nobi will ask your granny if she fell. If granny says “no,” Nobi reverts to stand-by. Otherwise, Nobi will contact you or another trusted contact and, if nobody answers, it calls the emergency services and unlocks the door.
A little lifesaver in more ways than one, Nobi comes with a built-in smoke detector and air quality sensor. All in all, it’s a groundbreaking device that looks set to revolutionize care for older adults. Vayyar Home is producing something similar – expect the competition to heat up in the coming years.
Like something straight out of Minority Report, facial recognition technology is set to be a big smart home security trend. The Netatmo Indoor Smart Camera is one of the most innovative – it can distinguish between a familiar and an unfamiliar face. If an intruder is spotted in your home, it immediately sends a notification and a video of the intruder to your smartphone. You can also connect it to other smart devices, like the Netatmo Indoor Siren, to scare the living daylights out of intruders.
As with most smart home devices, Google is never far behind. Its Nest Cam IQ Indoor is one of the most accurate facial recognition cameras on the market. It comes with an integrated Google Home speaker, meaning that when it’s not ID’ing burglars you can ask it about the weather.
While physical security is important, the security of our smart home devices and the personal data they measure and track is often overlooked. And, with smart devices playing an increasingly central role in our homes, getting cybersecurity right is more crucial than ever.
One giant leap for home security trends in 2021 is WiFi 6 and, more specifically, its onboard security protocol – WPA3. This next-generation WiFi has been introduced to account for and improve today’s networks which connect an increasing number of smart devices. Besides delivering faster internet speeds, this upgrade brings greater password protection, individualized encryption for home networks, and greater all-round protection from brute force hacking. As such, WPA3 looks set to become the new standard.
With these tech trends and more on the horizon, it’s clear that 2021 will be a big year for home security innovation. Whether it’s out-there tech like home drones and facial recognition, or ingenious devices to help keep loved ones safe, these devices will set the benchmark for years to come.
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