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Talk of the Town: Unpacking the Power of Voice-Controlled Smart Homes

by Ann Ferguson

Are you ready to "talk the walk" in the smart home world? Voice control assistants aren't just a passing trend; they're quickly becoming a necessity for most of us. By next year, it's estimated that over 8.4 billion people will be chatting away with their homes, asking for the weather, setting reminders, or controlling home automation.

But what does that mean for you? Let's look closer at what voice-controlled smart home automation is and what it can do for you.

What is Voice Control Home Automation?

Concept image of a home, a smart device, and a voice assistant connecting to both of them on a blue background

What exactly is a voice control home automation system? It's like your own personal genie, but instead of rubbing a lamp, you're speaking your wishes into existence to your smart home system. This tech marvel, aka the smart assistant technology embedded in your smart home system, will recognize the specific voice commands you give to trigger the proper action or response!

Words in Time: A Brief History of Voice Control

Before we go more into how voice-controlled smart homes work, let's look at how this fascinating technology has looked over the years. While modern smart home voice assistants are incredibly sophisticated, you'd be surprised by how far back the technology really goes! Check out this ride through time:

  • 1950s: Voice recognition was just a toddler, only recognizing spoken digits but not much else.
  • 1990s: Voice technology slowly improved to recognize a wider range of commands but still had limitations.
  • 2000s: The first voice-controlled smart home systems using the X10 system were introduced, letting users control their homes.
  • Mid-2000s: The invention of smartphones and mobile apps led to the beginning of integrated virtual assistants, where the technology listens and talks back to you.
  • 2010s: Voice recognition tech matured, using machine learning and neural networks to understand natural language and context for a more sophisticated voice-controlled smart home system.

Talking Tech: How Does Voice Control Work?

Concept image of a voice assistant connected to all the smart devices it can control

So, how does all this magic happen? Well, it's all about the beauty of integration. Your voice control feature is like the maestro of your smart home orchestra, coordinating all your smart devices to play in harmony using various technologies.

Smart home voice assistants use Natural Language Processing (NLP) and speech recognition to decode your commands and respond using machine-learning algorithms to understand the intent and the context behind your phrasing. This is all translated into text and communicated to your devices using Wi-Fi, Zigbee, or Z-wave, where the sensors and actuators receive and respond to the commands.

They’re basically translators who speak both human and tech!

Commands at Your Service

Woman turn tells the control panel to show her the power usage and makes adjustments

So, what can you do with your newfound vocal powers? Plenty! Almost any part of your integrated smart home system can be controlled using your voice, just like you can with your smart devices. Some functions include:

  • Set Up Scenes: Say "Good Night," and your house dims the lights, locks the doors, and sets your alarm for the next day. Or try "Good Morning" and be greeted with your favorite music, a warm house, and a fresh pot of coffee.
  • Easier Hands-Free Control: Cue music to play and turn the TV to a program without hunting for a remote.
  • Lights: Dim lights by a certain percentage or turn off lights in specific rooms with simple commands.
  • Temperature: Adjust it, turn it on or off, and even ask what the temperature is to make the necessary adjustments.
  • Security: Lock the door, arm or disarm the system without a control panel, and engage the window locks.
  • Status Checks: Easily reference whether you locked the door, the thermostat setting, if the alarm is active, etc. Whatever you need checking, it'll do it for you with one simple command.
  • Appointments & Reminders: set up and coordinate your calendars and tell the system to provide timely reminders for each task.
  • Search & Task Functionality: easily ask for directions to a location, write messages to contacts, draft emails you wish to send — whatever you need it to do, ask for it!

No matter what you need, your custom integrators (aka, our team) will set up your voice-control integration to work for you! So, let us know everything you want your smart home to do!

Chatting Up the Future: What's Next for Voice Control?

Wow, that's a lot of stuff you can do with your voice — and it will only improve! The future predictions for what smart home assistants can do are astonishing! For instance, they predict that you can use:

  • Advanced natural language processing to better understand and respond to more complex commands.
  • Personalized responses based on each user's preference and history — it'll recognize each individual voice.
  • Improved security with voice biometrics by only allowing authorized users to command your system (no more accidental wake triggers!).
  • Wider control range with improved IoT integration (it'll control more devices!).
  • Predictive analytics to anticipate your needs and make suggestions based on your habits.

Your Voice, Your Home

Man tells his smart mirror to start a pot of coffee with voice command

Wow, it's impressive to see what voice-controlled smart home systems can do — and there's only more for the future! So, don't wait to establish your fully integrated smart home system in your home; our team at Audio Video Intelligence is waiting for you!

Contact us today, and we'll set up your consultation appointment to go over what your dream home of the future looks like!