Wireless home automation

Up until now home automation control systems required extensive wiring infrastructure to operate. For pre-built houses, this generally required difficult and expensive retrofitting of cable. Clipsal Wireless C-Bus is about to change all that. By Todd Maxwell.

Home automation is the holy grail of the complete entertainment system. However, if you are not building a house, live in a rental property or you are not of a mind to lay kilometres of cable, then home automation seems like a very distant idea.

The retrofit market has been a difficult area for home automation. The costs of renovation ? wall trenching, plastering, re-painting are especially high ? but the advantage of wireless technology is that it removes a large part of the cost barrier. Even those with a modest budget can enjoy the advantages of home automation.

What is home automation?


Imagine a day in the life of Jane Jetson (from the TV cartoon series ?The Jetsons?) – Jane?s biggest chore is pushing a button on the Food-a-Rac-a-Cycle machine that instantly dispenses any type of food. Dec-isions, decisions!

Jane and her family never experience bad weather, either. Fortunately, they reside at SkyPad Apartments, which are built on huge hydraulic lifts that raise and lower as needed to stay clear of bad weather. If that?s not enough, husband George never has to worry about parking; he just folds his car into a suitcase and takes it with him. In a world where wet showers are replaced with sonic showers and household robots are part of everyday life, it?s clear that automation and robotic gadgets make life a little easier.

Back in the 1960s, the futuristic lifestyle of the Jetsons was way ahead of its time. These days, new technology makes home automation a reality, although not quite in the same way as the Jetsons.

Chances are, you already benefit from home automation that is part of your everyday life – you just may not realize it. Do you remember the days when you had to change the television channel or adjust the volume right on the television set? Remotes changed all that, enabling you to make those changes by simply pointing a wireless remote device at the television and pressing a button. Life became a little easier, didn?t it?

Although your home is not quite operating on its own, effortless smart home technology is eloquently blended in, providing the ability to save time, simplify everyday tasks, and maybe even have a little fun.

You may have heard the term ?smart home system?. Smart home systems allow you to control and manage your living environment from devices such as keypads, telephones, handheld remotes, touch panels, or voice recognition. These devices allow you to control a pre-programmed computer that connects various subsystems in your home. You can think of these systems as a home network ? many devices networked together to provide you with a more convenient and efficient lifestyle.

Home networks can be complicated and have special requirements such as structured wiring. This provides a base for all the subsystems in your home. You have wiring for devices such as telephones, television, and audio that runs to a centralised hub.