How to automate your home with X10 and the Iphone/Ipad

Published: 24th May 2011
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Technology has been ever increasing and developments in mobile computing have now increased it to the point that smart phones and mobile key pads can manage homes and also act as the remote controller. How is this achieved? It is actually very simple and can be low or high cost depending on how much you wish to spend on the items. Home automation has the ability to make a house particular energy efficient as you can turn items off when not in use as well as customize your house to how you want.

The X10 modules are the best (these can also be controlled by the Harmony product ranges of remotes controls and other universal remotes). Starter kits are available with additional add-ons (e.g. lamp plug sockets as required. However there are a variety of home automation products available.

X10 works by using your homes existing wiring set up. A transmitter sends information to your modules using existing wiring infrastructure. This means that no new expensive cables need to be installed. X10 receivers are then position at each of the areas that you wish to control

X10 controllers will cost in the region of 30. X10 start kits will also be around the 40-50 mark depending on what sent up you choose to get.

When buying a home automation product that is intended to be used via an IPhone or Ipad then I recommend searching ITunes for the relevant module.

The X10 system works by the IPhone sending a signal to your computer and the computer interface then sends a signal to the controller which picks up the signal and activates the command you have chosen (such as dim light etc). . The setup does require wi-fi to work so it will be necessary to ensure you have this installed and turned on when you intend to use the system.

X10 offer the X10 commander for IPhone but again you need to ensure that what you are using is compatible. When running this system you will need the computer software interface such as CM15 pro which will cost around the 50-60 mark

For those using the IPad the best X10 module is the IHomeTouch. Importantly you do need to set up your computer to be running the relevant software for and to act as a server. The server software is pretty much free in the case of the IHomeTouch server but again you will also need to run an X10 computer interface such as CM15 Pro. Again the system also requires you to have wi-fi installed and turned on ready to use

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