The term 'smart' is typically applied to an 'intelligent' web-connected electronic device or system which may operate stand-alone or in a network with other devices. It usually involves some form of user interaction.
New technology is enabling the creation of smart homes, integrating devices to make the home a better place to be in terms of safety, comfort, productivity and well-being. Smart thermostats note, for example, each time the dial is turned up or down, to build a detailed schedule based on the user’s preferences.
BSRIA (Building Services Research and Information Association) defines smart homes as those operating, ‘…a building control system, which provides integrated, centralised control of two or more individual systems’. Effectively this is the residential extension of commercial type controls.
Individual systems can be any of the following:
- Environmental control system (heating ventilation and air conditioning - HVAC).
- Household appliances (clothes dryers, washing machines, refrigerators, freezers, dishwashers, ovens, coffee-makers, microwaves, etc.)
- Consumer electronics (TV, radio, audio-video equipment, game consoles, etc.)
- Building components (blinds, curtains, windows, doors, etc.).
Devices may be connected through a wired or wireless network to allow control via a personal computer, and may allow remote access via the internet using a PC, smartphone or tablet.
These smart products typically incorporate user-friendly operation, for example, displaying green symbols when energy is being saved and red when excessive amounts are being consumed.
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
- Building management systems.
- Engineering Smart Cities.
- European connected and smart home market.
- Information and communications technology.
- Internet of things.
- Making a house a home.
- PAS 180:2014 Smart cities – Vocabulary.
- PAS 181:2014 Smart city Framework. Guide to establishing strategies for smart.
- PAS 182 Smart city data concept model.
- Smart buildings.
- Smart cities design timeframe.
- Smart cities.
- Smart city.
- Smart home and light commercial market in 2017.
- Smart technology.
- The global smart homes market.
- The smart buildings market.
Featured articles and news
Read about Belgrade's Brutalist landmark - the Western City Gate.
Read about the measures that can be taken by individuals to protect and minimise exposure to outdoor sourced air pollution.
Government announces leaseholds on new-build houses will be banned.
Transport Secretary announces public consultation into London's funding of Crossrail 2.
Have a look at some of the most impressive concert stage designs of all time, including Pink Floyd, U2, Rolling Stones, and more...
What is the Home Quality Mark? Find out how it can help you when buying/renting a new home.
Business Secretary launches £246m Faraday Challenge to establish UK as world leader in battery technology.
Government announces new plans for regulations to improve safety and security awareness of drone users.
Read our introductory article to the various different types of fuel.
IHBC book review: Charles Barry’s monumental struggle to rebuild the Houses of Parliament.
Read about RSHP's British Museum extension which has been shortlisted for the 2017 Stirling Prize.
Read our introductory article to building a house extension.
More updates from DCMS about the large-scale testing of cladding systems and the number of buildings affected.
UandI secure resolution to grant planning consent for major new regeneration project.