From devices to make your home safer to inventions designed to prevent plumbing emergencies, tech journalist Becca Caddy reveals the top security devices and smart ways you protect your home in the not-so-distant future.
- Buy some eyes in the sky to watch your windows
- Smart locks and devices to avert potential break-ins
- Early-warning systems to prevent floods and fire
Smart security guards that fly'A few years ago, a simple CCTV set-up would have been regarded as state-of-the-art, but in a couple of years time, it won't be unlikely to see drones patrolling homes, or laser deterrent systems,' says Ran Berger, CEO of Flat Rock Technology.
Drones aren't just toys for adults who don't want to grow up - they could keep you and your family safe, too. Just make sure that you don't live in a 'no fly zone' and that you respect your neighbour's privacy
Plenty of the high-end drones already on the market are capable security drones, such as the Phantom 4 Pro from DJI, which can record 4K video and full HD at 1080p.
Hawkeye's Indoor Security Drone doesn't even need to be controlled by you. It uses positioning algorithms and 'detect routines' to move around inside your house, ensuring that there are no break-ins and records non-stop video for you to review.
Robot security guardIf a flying security guard feels a little OTT, then you might prefer something more grounded (in more than one sense of the word). Robot security guards are already patrolling shopping centres in America and offices in the UK, but are far too advanced for the consumer market. Instead, this cute Smartphone Controlled Home Patrolling Robot will roll around your domicile and allow you to talk with kids and pets through two-way speakers – or warn off would-be burglars.
FakeTV Intruder DeterrentFor something more reasonable, the Response FakeTV could help you keep your home secure. Its LED lights simulate someone watching TV, deterring opportunistic thieves who are only tempted by an empty house.
Keep your home under (smart) lock and keyUntil you have a flying or rolling drone guarding your home, you could upgrade your regular locks to smart ones. The August Lock is a modern take on a regular, heavy-duty lock, but what makes it different is you can control it all with your phone – this means no actual keys, just virtual ones.
According to Tom Cheesewright, Applied Futurist and founder of Book of the Future, we can expect our locks to get even smarter by using artificial intelligence to learn more about our habits.
'The most important home security feature of the near future will be invisible. Not a remote-controlled lock, or a motion-sensing camera, but the artificial intelligence that sits behind them,' says Tom.
'That's because we are often the biggest threat to our own homes,' he continues. 'When you’re rushing out of the door it's all too easy to forget to close a window or lock a door properly, and a huge proportion of burglaries are opportunistic.'
Advanced Canary security systemStep forward the Canary, a smart tech device that aims to do all of the hard work for you. Like a drone, it'll ensure that your home is safe and secure, but it also sets an alarm, records video, reminds you of all the stuff you're meant to be doing and even keeps an eye on air quality, temperature and humidity.
Protect against leaky pipes and kitchen firesAlthough the future holds robotic security systems and super smart locks, we shouldn't ignore other home calamities.
'Many of us overlook the fact it's not just intruders that might mess up our homes and threaten our security, but other things, too, such as gas or water leaks,' says Tom.
The latest device from Nest, called Nest Protect, is the evolution of the regular smoke alarm. It speaks to you, tests itself, lasts a decade, sends an alarm and alerts your phone of all its activity – so you can take action, or silence it if you've just burnt the toast.
Indexa water leak alarm
But it's not just smoke that could wreak havoc on your fancy new tech-enabled home for the future. The Indexa water leak alarm detects any leaking water from your washing machine, dishwater or pipes and it'll alert you with a warning sound in seconds.
As high-tech as your home security can be with the help of these products and future inventions, no system is without its flaws (yes, even one with robot security guards), so make sure you supplement your security installations with the right cover for your home and possessions.
So there you have it. Your Yale locks and smoke detectors are just waiting for the latest upgrades that will help you stay safe and secure, and make your home super smart.
For more of the latest top tech, follow Becca Caddy on Twitter @beccacaddy.
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