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  • Writer's pictureSimon Salvin

More Home Tech After A Scare

There’s a word you never want to hear when it comes to your home….Fire! It’s the word that came down my phone line. We were both at work, Angela at the office in Nottingham whilst I was with a client, luckily just around the corner from home. Angela’s manager lives on the next road to us and is currently at home on maternity leave, so when she heard the sirens of multiple fire engines and saw think smoke coming from the direction of our apartment she quickly phoned Angela who in turn called me.

Our first thought is always the safety of our beloved house cat Carwash the Siamese. Yes that’s right, we called him Carwash, why? Look up Willo the Wisp, where the inspiration comes from our childhood.

So I rapidly headed to the car and shot round to the apartment, I couldn’t see smoke and I passed the fire engine driving away from the direction of our home which reassured me this wasn’t a serious incident. In fact it was the renovation of a property along with a new build bungalow at the end of our development, where the builders decided it was acceptable to burn their rubbish.

The one thing this taught me is how unaware I was of our home when we’re not there, and why? All the technology I need is readily available on the market to purchase today, simple items that don’t break the bank!

The main issue had always been having cameras inside the house which Angela was set against, but this was a wake up call, so two cameras and a smart smoke alarm were ordered and arrived within 24 hours.

I wanted both items to be Apple Homekit compatible, standalone units connected to Wi-fi without the need for a hub.

I chose eufy for the cameras, a division of the US brand Anker who Ive purchased many of their cable and audio products in the past. Connecting these to HomeKit gives me unlimited recording to iCloud with my Apple One subscription so no need to purchase another storage subscription. One for our living space facing towards the kitchen and one for my office.

So far its given us an insight in to Carwash’s night time habits and taught us to never leave the TV on if we go out, with facial recognition the notification alerts on my phone can become overwhelming!

Where the cameras gave me a choice of HomeKit integration or using the eufy app with their services, the smoke alarm didn’t. I chose the Netatmo which simply integrates into HomeKit, the setup was so simple it took less than a minute to configure through their app.

Although we have a wired smoke alarm which would set off the communal alarms in the apartment building there’s nothing to notify me if smoke was detected. Now it would do just that, and with the ability to view our home and unlock the apartment door with our smart lock, I have the best chance to save our furry boy!

It’s both piece of mind and more gadgets to play with, and you know how much i love gadgets!

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