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Home / Tips and Tricks / It's ours! Use technology to improve the exterior of your smart home

It's ours! Use technology to improve the exterior of your smart home



The "smart home" often evokes images of things that go inside a house – a Amazon Echo speaker en Nest thermostat a Samsung refrigerator . But increasingly we see new technology and products that can help outside your front door – and your back door as well. You can use some of these things all year round, like a doorbell or a LED spotlight ; while others are seasonal. And there are also apps that can help .

We put together all the latest technology for your yard, garage and beyond. Here is a look:

Irrigation system

Smart gardening used to be focused on freestanding plant sensors . Buy a Parrot Flower Power or a Oso Technologies PlantLink keep it in a pot ̵

1; or directly in your garden – and wait for it to tell you when to water your plant. These small units were quite limited, especially for people interested in overseeing larger gardens.

Indicate: connected irrigation system. From Rachio's latest smart sprinkler set up to CNET's own homemade drip irrigation system, which we use to grow salad, jalapeños and Carolina Reapers, these systems help you track a wider space remotely.

Security cameras

Outdoor cameras are not new, but the various options have increased a ton in recent years. Once limited to a standard camera we see cameras built into outdoor lamps camera and door clock hybrids and even ] battery powered cameras .

We are most excited about the new LTE cameras that operate over a mobile network, effectively monitoring garden pests outside the Wi-Fi area.

Expand your Wi-Fi area

A wireless access point, also called an extender, is a great way to get your Wi-Fi network off, if you don't want an LTE camera or simply want to get internet in the garden.

An outdoor extender, such as Netgear Orbi Outdoor can easily handle this. Read our in-depth look at how to cover your farm in Wi-Fi here.

LEDs and luminaires

We have covered indoor lighting to a great extent, but smart outdoor lighting is a relatively new space. Sure, you can control an outdoor light with an indoor wired Lutron switch but what about smart LEDs that fight the elements?

There is good news on that front – Philips is leading the management this year with a complete range of outdoor sound diodes and luminaires . We get a story later this week about the best options for outdoor lighting.

Garage door opener

Yes, a garage is not technically "outside", but it covers that space between your driveway and your home and for us it is where we store the lawn mower and the garden tools. Smart garage door openers allow you to open and close your garage doors from an app and some also let you use voice commands. They can also send reminders to your phone to notify you when you have left a door open. A complete summary of the latest garage door openings will be available at the end of the week.


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Weather-tracking tech

You can track the weather in your area with a quick Google search anytime, but smart weather stations are more customized. BloomSky Sky2 Weather Camera Station tracks temperature, wind speed and rain and air pressure directly in your backyard. Whether you are a weather or want to monitor the latest forecast to determine when it is best to plant, water and harvest plants in your garden, products like this can be a smart investment.

It is just an overview of the categories that we are happy to cover in the spring, but there is so much more to come – including a robot mower roundup . I update this page to include all outdoor technology related stories we cover this week, so check out this space.


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