The connected apartment is here. Whether it be a thermostat you can manage remotely or swapping in WiFi-enabled light bulbs for intelligent illumination all day, small changes make a world of difference.
Below, a busy grad student explains the many ways integrating her apartment freed up space so she could take back control of her time and reduce stress.
It all started with a wifi controlled coffee pot. My roommate suggested we get one last year, when our routines and time management looked vastly different, and it revolutionized our mornings.
Who knew we could conserve time and money by investing in a coffee pot that was pre-set to brew before we went off to class or work? Prior to that, it seemed we were waiting in endless queues for cafecito on Brickell Ave and either late to school or on time, cranky, and stressed from the maddening morning rush. Smart home technology always felt like a commodity I could only access once I graduated, had a stable job, and was fully adulting, but one too many lines pushed me to make the leap.
Connectivity is All Around
We live in a space that is already connected by a solid network infrastructure. Our building is outfitted with ButterflyMX, a smart intercom system for folks who live in apartments. It allows our guests more ease in accessing our unit—it’s as simple as FaceTiming—and saves us the trip downstairs. ButterflyMX was one of the many forward-thinking features that sold us on the building. Automation is everywhere and more accessible than one might presume.
Light It Up
Our next investment post-brewer was, of course, some smart lighting. It seemed like the obvious option—procure a couple of wifi light bulbs, screw them in, hook it up to the network, and have intelligent illumination all day. What swayed us towards taking this particular step? The many articles on how lighting synced to your circadian rhythm helps you sleep and we—two grad students working and studying full-time—don’t get much of that. Also, considering our student status, we’d be remiss if we didn’t mention the ambient options perfect for transforming an apartment into an inviting London-esque lounge scene.
MTV Cribs Aspirations
My roommate’s parents eventually caught wind of our growing automation affinity and gifted us a Sonos Playbar. This, we’ve regarded as the most thoughtful apartment gift one could ever receive because—as we’ve come to learn—the true hallmark of any connected home is the entertainment system. I connected my Spotify and our London-esque lounge scene only intensified. Now we can play deep house from our phones in any part of the apartment, whenever we want.
Nesting with Nest
Due to the overwhelming energy-suck of an AC that was running constantly without anyone present to cool off, we invested in a Nest thermostat. Its sleek design gives our apartment a modern aesthetic, and the motion sensors ensure it isn’t running when there isn’t anyone home. If I decide I want to come home to a chilly apartment, I can always turn it on remotely.
Apple TV and Chill
When the time to purchase our first TV rolled around, I knew Apple TV was the way to go. We don’t use cable, so the idea of acquiring a non-smart TV never crossed our minds. What we needed was a home for all of our streaming services, and Apple TV did not disappoint. We were able to connect it to our Sonos Playbar, and just like that, our living room felt like a workspace by day—fueled by productive lighting, easy listening, and fresh coffee—and a home theater by night.
Using our smart-ready apartment as a foundation, we were able to construct the space we’ve been wanting but never knew we could have.
Responsive Living, the term coined by Acoustic Architects founders, Aaron Flint and Spencer Hauldren, is the concept of seamlessly enhancing the client’s unique lifestyle using smart home technology. Responsive Living allows you to interact with your space via touch input, voice command, and predictive automation, placing you in full control of your home.
If you would like to learn more about smart solutions for your apartment or small space, feel free to connect with us. We will be happy to schedule a demo with you.
For more information, visit acousticarchitects.net.
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