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Full Guide: What Is Home Automation And How Does It Work?

A mobile phone screenshot showing all devices controlled by the Amazon Alexa app, including Fire sticks, Echo Dots and Echos.

“Home automation is the future”, they say. But what exactly is ‘home automation’? We might think of a coffee maker that automatically brews your coffee when your alarm goes off, or a light bulb that emits different color light depending on the time of day. Home automation does include these things, of course, but it … Read more

New Video – How To Play Free Music (With Zero Ads) On Your Google Mini

YouTube video thumbnail - play free music on Google Mini (no ads) - four awesome methods.

I have posted a new video on YouTube covering how to play free music (with zero ads) on a Google Mini/Google Nest Mini device, which is part of my ‘Does the Google Nest Mini Need a Subscription?‘ article: Video Transcript Hey YouTube, it’s Tristan from Smart Home Point here. I wanted to speak to you … Read more

Does Google Home (& Mini) Need a Music Subscription?

Google Play Music logo

The Amazon Echo offers over two million songs as part of Amazon Prime, but Google doesn’t have a similar membership scheme. Also the ‘small print’ of the Google Mini and Google Nest Mini says that “subscriptions may be required for certain content”. But what exactly does this mean? If you bought a Mini and don’t … Read more

11 Reasons Why Smart Thermostats Are Pointless

Two Google Nest thermostats in store, the Learning Thermostat 3rd Gen and Thermostat E.

“My smart thermostat has really improved my home life” – said no one ever. When smart ‘learning’ thermostats burst onto the scene in 2011, they did so to great fanfare. After all, they are smart. They learn. They will massively improve your home life… or so the marketing promised. The reality is a lot more … Read more

The Definitive History Of Smart Home Devices

Part of the advert poster for the Thor-32, an "electric washing machine with Thor All Metal Swining Wringer". The washing machine is pictured, with some cables and a motor visible at the bottom.

History is littered with incorrect predictions of what smart homes of the future would look like. Whether it was the LA Times Magazine predicting in 1988 that we’d all have robot butlers (I wish this had come true!), or Intel scientist Dean Pomerleau predicting in 2009 that we’d soon be controlling computer systems with our … Read more