“The most important part of any smart home is the control system and user interface.”

The acid test for a ‘smart home’ is how easy somebody can come along, understand how it works and how to use all aspects of the system. As an installer, if you can master this you will be in high demand because this fundamentally, is the most important thing for nine out of ten end users.

Topology, in programming terms refers to the overall design of the user interface. This will depend on the size of the property, extent of the control, which type of control device it is, and how the client wants to use it. A home with control through an Ipad of the whole system may at the top level ask you to select the room that you are in before asking what you want to do, but could equally ask you what you want to do before asking which area you are in. A one room solution would normally split out the various options at the top level followed by more detailed options at the second level. Similarly, it could present a number of different scenes like ‘night time’, ‘reading’ or ‘cleaning’, which could set up the lighting, curtains or blinds, heating and other aspects for that particular room usage.