Imagine finally having a chance to change the way you control your air conditioner. No more rolling of knobs. No more need to personally crank the thermostat up and down. And you don’t even have to be home either. You can be at your office or on the road. Or farther away. You can be out-of-state. Or you can be anywhere in the world, wondering if you’ve left your AC on. What if you don’t have to sweat it out anymore? What if all you have to do is push a button from your smartphone? What if you have a smart air conditioner?
Comfort at Your Fingertips
Experience teaches us that any amount of genuine sense of comfort requires a certain degree of control, and the same can be said when choosing the best climate control system inside our own homes. In this day and age when automation becomes the norm, one of the most touted HVAC advances is wireless control; the capability to manage and control your home temperature directly from smart devices. And what have upended the old ways and brought us to this age of disruptive innovations? What gives us this exciting time when we can just simply push a button from our smart phone or tablet to turn the AC on, control the thermostat, and cool the house even before we get home? Two words: The Internet. Connectivity.
IoT: Redefining Your HVAC Comfort
The unbridled rise of Internet of Things (IoT)—a concept that aptly describes the current state of connected devices and the surge of digitization in all facets of human lifestyle and enterprise—would have no way of escaping the singular thing that points most to our need for comfort right inside our abodes—home HVAC. IoT pertains to the extended use of the power of the internet outside the traditional computing systems (like desktop computers and laptops) toward integration with smart mobile devices. The result is a vast network of internet-enabled devices which are connected together and allow for easier distribution of data and communication. Home automation or the creation of smart homes where typical home devices, such as thermostat, lighting, fire alarms, appliances, garage doors, and even doorbells are integrated together into one system, enabling centralized and wireless control. Just imagine being able to control all of the various devices, appliances, and other contraptions inside your home via a single remote controller or through your smart mobile device. It is not surprising that one of the most popular automation devices that really gained traction in the consumer market is a smart home device—the Nest Thermostat that came out in 2011. Providing a compelling example of the success of home automation (and IoT in a larger context), the Nest Thermostat redefined convenience and showed the way how a new and better experience of temperature comfort can be achieved without costing you much time, effort, and energy. By 2020, it is projected that at least 50 billion networks of connected devices will be created and deployed in various types of home, industrial, and enterprise environments. And the Internet continues to converge everything, still. "It will be part of your presence all the time," said Alphabet’s Executive Chairman and ex-Google CEO Eric Schmidt, according to CNET in one of its feature reports about the 2015 World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. It is in the same forum where Schmidt remarkably, and quite intriguingly, said that "the Internet will disappear," referring, of course, to how the Internet will blur the line between the virtual and real because the internet will become very much part of our everyday lives. "Imagine you walk into a room, and the room is dynamic. And with your permission and all of that, you are interacting with the things going on in the room," Schmidt said in the same forum. True enough, the Internet is keeping all things together in a single system and reshaping the way we use and interact with the physical devices around us. Now, everything goes smart. Aside from smart phones, you’ve heard of smart homes, smart buildings, smart cities, smart cars, smart watch, and other smart things. You name it, it could be designed smartly. There’s just no limit what the IoT can do. This, essentially, changes the way we communicate and interact with people and experience all the ease of comfort that we’re seeking to achieve. Yes, the last couple of years have been remarkable for the IoT, but not an easy one either due to the rise of security and privacy concerns. Even so, the creation of smart and integrable devices did not wane a bit. In the HVAC world, smart air conditioners are a just a single node of connected devices, but just as significant when we try to view the development based on how far we’ve come since Willis Haviland Carrier brought us the first taste of temperature comfort in 1902. The smart air conditioner is certainly the new big thing, and IoT is paving the path to how we can completely achieve control over our comfort in a way that we can’t possibly imagine before. Through the power of the internet, smart cooling and heating systems can now be controlled, monitored, and maintained through smart phones and other connected smart devices. A smart air conditioner is certainly the new big thing, and IoT is paving the path to how we can completely achieve control over our comfort in a way that we can’t possibly imagine before. Through the power of the internet, smart cooling and heating systems can now be controlled, monitored, and maintained through smart phones and other connected smart devices. And with the array of available air conditioners, nothing is more built for automation than the most innovative, energy-efficient, and powerful cooling and heating solutions today—the ductless mini split systems.
Ductless Mini Splits: Air Conditioners Made Smart
Inherently feature-rich and ultra-high efficient and powerful, ductless mini split systems undeniably carry the hallmarks of a highly evolved and more sophisticated air-conditioning system that is a perfect match for automation. As an example, here are the typical capabilities of a ductless air conditioner: • Control the unit from your smart device. Wi-Fi-enabled, the system can be connected and accessed from your smart phone and tablet through the installed Smart app. • Choose your desired room temperature. Featuring a multi-operational mode, the controller provides you with the option of setting your unit into any of the available operational modes: heat, cool, dry, fan only, and auto. • Set the unit to operate for a specific period of time. Built with a timer, the unit can be programmed to run or turn off depending on a set amount of time. • Secure the unit with a touch of a button. Designed with a privacy lock mode, you can set the unit’s security feature to prevent unauthorized access to the system. • Turn on the sleep mode. Using the available sleep modes, you have the option to adjust the room’s temperature during your sleep. This will enable you to save energy consumption without affecting your comfort level. • Conveniently read the temperature from the controller. Featuring a large backlit LCD display, you can program the controllers to display the temperature reading in °F or °C. consumption. • Sense and control the temperature at the remote controller instead of at the indoor unit. Designed with the sensor function, the unit can be programmed to adjust the airflow and temperature based on what is sensed by the remote controller. Smart Controls for Your Automation-ready Ductless Mini Split Building on the existing smart capabilities of advanced air conditioners like ductless mini split systems, some add-on AC control tools are made available to enable the deployment of wireless remote access, control, management, and maintenance. Among these accessories designed to create a smart system out of non-connected but automation-ready AC units are the sensor-equipped and Wi-Fi-enabled smart AC control devices like tado° and Sensibo. tado° Smart AC Control: Keeping Your Air Conditioner in Your Hand Wherever You Are tado° is a smart thermostat that lets you connect your air conditioner or heat pump to your smart phone and directly control the system through the installed mobile app. It was rolled out in 2014, and since then, has through various upgrades in the systems and updates on the app. Today, it is hailed as one of the best smart AC control device options. In a nutshell, tado° gives you more control over your conditioner, and consequently over your comfort, wherever you are. To achieve smart climate control and automated access and management via the smart mobile device, your tado° AC control systems requires three components: 1. The tado° smart thermostat that you can mount on the wall or place on any surface in the room or inside your house. 2. The tado° mobile app that you need to install into your smart mobile device. 3. Internet access via home Wi-Fi and mobile internet. 4. Your cooling and heating system, which could be any type of air conditioner as long as it has a remote control that is built with settings display. The most ideal system to be used, of course, would be the ductless mini split system. How does tado° work? As a smart control device for your cooling or heating system at home, tado° can work both ways, enabling you to achieve maximum comfort and energy savings. Your tado° device controls your AC through the infrared signals. It connects to your home Wi-Fi. It is important to know that aside from remote and automated control, tado° specifically provides smart cooling and heating through timed operations. This is made possible by the system’s smart scheduling function and geofencing capabilities. The smart scheduling capability of the tado° device enables you to control the climate inside your home at any time of the day. In other words, you can personalize your experience of temperature comfort by. setting different temperature at different times of the day, depending on your needs or preference. The smart scheduling function is supported by the geofencing capability of the device. When you need to initiate cooling operation, for example, the device, through the internet connection and via the tado° app, allows you to control your air conditioner and set an automatic pre-cooling function before you get home. Through its presence detection capability, it knows how far you are away from home and sets the temperature according to your preferred level on that specific schedule, enabling you to enjoy just the exact climate inside your home when you finally get home. When you leave, it also automatically turns the air conditioner off. When it comes heating, the tado° smart AC control device works almost the same way. Because the smart thermostat and the smart radiator thermostats can be connected to the internet, you are also able to control your heating system at home. Through location-based control capability, the tado° app on your smartphone also enables the device to detect how far away you are from home and set the temperature accordingly. Take note that manual control over your heating system or radiator is also an option. Just like the way it does when used for cooling, the tado° device also works to lower the temperature when no one is left in the room. When someone enters, your system warms up again. Essentially, tado° smart AC control enables you to achieve the following: • Control your cooling and heating systems anytime, from anywhere. • Lower your energy consumption and gain a projected savings of up to 40% on your electric costs. • Enjoy personalized comfort by setting your AC to operate different levels of temperatures at different times of the day. • Own a smart system that cools down even before you get home and turns off when no one is inside the room. • Have instant and constant access to important information that relates to your system’s operations—from temperature to projected savings. • Use a smart system that is capable of connecting to the Cloud (through your home Wi-Fi) • Control your different cooling and heating systems at home via just one app. • Connect your AC to your automated home infrastructure. • Control other devices and services • Integrate all your home smart solutions, including your HVAC system, to create a smart home. It is worth mentioning that tado° is an evolving system and undergoes constant development. As an IoT device, it is designed to adapt other smart capabilities and features. A roadmap for development is currently available, which include among other things wider system support, apps optimization, greater interoperability with other smart devices, localization, and some other personalization features. For more information, you can visit https://www.tado.com. Sensibo: Making Your AC Smart, Maximizing Your Comfort, Increasing Your Energy-savings An external device that you can simply plug into your remote controlled cooling and systems, Sensibo is another innovation that makes your air conditioner smart, connected to the internet, and controllable via your smart mobile device with an installed app. Using Sensibo also lets you monitor your AC or heat pump system remotely wherever you are. Sensibo consists of two main parts: 1. A mounting unit that is used to attach the device to the surface of the air conditioning unit. 2. The main pod unit which is attached to a magnetic axis around the mounting unit. To enable an optimized and efficient operation and control of your AC systems, the Sensibo Pods are designed with two parts in terms of range, which is the following: 1. A smart hub that is connected to your home router. 2. A Sensibo Pod that is designed to match each air conditioner inside your home. Basically, Sensibo works like a smart remote control for your air conditioner. The device allows you to do the following: • Control your air conditioner at anytime from anywhere. • Remotely monitor your air conditioner’s temperature and humidity through your smart mobile device. • Set your AC to automatically run before you arrive home or turn off when no person is present in the room or inside your home. • Set the unit to run different temperatures at various times of the day up to seven days. • Save energy, reduce energy consumption, and significantly lower your home’s energy bill. • Control the temperature with your voice. • Share the function (through Sensibo Sky) with everyone in the family so that member will be able to control a specific AC. Easy to install, integrable with other systems and apps (such as Amazon Echo and Google Home), and designed with an extensive open API, Sensibo is certainly an ideal smart AC control solution that will interest homeowners and smart system developers alike. Sensibo can be used to any type of air conditioning systems, whether it is a split AC, mobile, AC, window AC, or cassettes and central ACs with remote control. You don’t have to worry as well about compatibility with certain models. Sensibo supports all types of systems. For example, you can have an LG, Gree, Mitsubishi, Friedrich, and Samsung AC systems in different rooms inside your home and you wouldn’t have any problem at all—you can connect and control all of them through the just single interface. Sensibo is compatible with any type of voltage and power outlet as well, which makes an ideal smart AC control device regardless of the country where you live. For your options, Sensibo is available for purchase in the following packages: • Single kit that comes with one unit and costs $119. • Starter kit that comes with two units and costs $238. • Home kit that comes with 3 units with a sale price of $297. • Family kit that comes with 4 units and costs $396. For more information, you can visit https://sensibo.com. tado° and Sensibo: Ideal for Your Ductless Mini Split As among the most advanced cooling and heating systems, ductless mini splits are the best way to go if you are looking for a perfect smart climate deployment through the integration of the system with smart AC control devices like tado° and Sensibo. Designed with wireless control and engineered for remote operations, these innovative solutions are the closest thing that you can get to having a full-blown smart air conditioner that is capable of intelligent control and smart operation.