THE BLOG

7 Clever Smart Home Inventions on My Radar

12/08/2014 14:40 BST | Updated 11/10/2014 10:59 BST

Google may have cornered the market with its Nest range of thermostats and smoke alarms, and Apple ignited the battle for the Internet of Things a few months ago with the announcement of its "Home" app.

The smart home of the future will be characterised however, by the sum of its many parts.

Here are some of the most exciting and accessible smart products that I've spotted recently:

Remember how in sci-fi films they had doors that only opened for the right person? Well we're on our way to making that a reality. Until then, smart locks which are opened via low energy Bluetooth on your phone will just have to do. This clever little thing not only allows you to control who enters your home, it also tells you when they have entered and left the property. Have a look here.

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Once you're in, you'll probably want a nice hot shower. In which case, you'll want the showerhead speaker from Moxie. While their advertising strapline is a little cheesy ("Your music wants to shower with you"), this is a great device - the wireless speaker clips onto your existing showerhead and streams music direct from your smart device. I've been enjoying washing my hair to the soundtrack of some thumping electro house! Here it is.

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From sensors to appliances, if you want a multi-device, multi-OS web app, try Nexia. It tells you when a family member has reached home safe and sends you alerts when unusual activity is detected in your home or guest house. Explore it here.

Interactive plant care anyone? For those with a green thumb, you may want to explore the Koubachi Wi-Fi Plant Sensor. You too can be a long distance gardener now! It gives you advice for plant care and has a long signal range. Have a browse here.

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While I doubt any of you have dreamt of the day when you can wirelessly control any plug in the house (not that sexy is it?), Plugaway's range of smart plugs is a simple yet brilliant invention that allows home owners to do this, switching off power remotely. Very handy when you've left the iron or hair straightener on and you can't derail your day to rush home and turn it off. Also energy saving, given appliances use energy even when on standby mode. Explore this Kickstarter project here.

It isn't just plugs that are getting the wireless treatment. Has the day been hotter than expected? Fire up the aircon remotely and come home to a cool house. Those who live in warmer countries, take a look here.

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I'll close with something that's just a little silly but could be helpful for the foodies - cue the Egg Minder. This smart egg tray wirelessly connects to your mobile device to track the number of eggs you have at any time, warning you when they go bad. It even has an in-tray LED that tells you which eggs are the oldest. Enjoy breakfast!