Smartphones: Your “Remote Control for Life”
Most college kids these days spend an exorbitant amount of time on their smartphones. When the Facebook app became available 24/7, it was basically game over for productivity. Fortunately, these amazing little devices are good for more than just stalking that chick from Anthropology of Social Classes, and may soon have an even larger hand in how you live your daily life.
In a recent story, CNN took a look at the growing Home Automation market, which is reminiscent of the Smart House movies from our childhoods. In this case, it’s a simple smartphone that has the brains to control many aspects of your life, from unlocking your car, to turning on your thermostat; the next big thing in phones has nothing to do with communication.
It’s impossible for a budgeting college kid to imagine a life in which the swipe of a phone screen can do so much more than scroll, but that reality might be as close as 2018. According to Transparency Market Research, they expect home automation to grow to close to a fifty-billion-dollar industry in the next five years.
Basically, anything that can be controlled remotely can now be controlled with the technology of smartphone apps. We’ve all seen the commercials where the woman unlocks her husband’s car from an airplane, or starts the car by tapping on her smartphone, but the latest technology allows us to control the television, lights, and temperature of our homes from our iPhones and Samsung devices. You can see inside your refrigerator from the grocery store, and even get notified if someone hits your parked car on the street. We can only assume that the next steps will be even more far-fetched, but in reality, they’re just around the corner.
What is currently a novel convenience for the rich is on its way to the middle class. While the smartfridge costs upwards of three thousand dollars, new developments in technology get exponentially cheaper as the years past. There’s a good chance that you’ll start to see affordable remote-control technology on your smartphone by the time you land your first job out of college.
Although the idea of robots in the home seems somewhat outlandish, many middle class Americans are already enjoying home devices, such as the Roomba, without blinking an eye. Now there are apps that allow you to control these robotic devices with your smartphone. It all started with simple home theater controls and key-finding apps, and is booming into one of the most anticipated markets. While I doubt that college dorms will update their technology to accommodate smartphone remotes, there are sure to be ways to hack into your professor’s PowerPoint presentation with a few swipes of your iPhone.