When Houseboats Meet Smart Technology

May 2019 Multimedia Jane Willow Web Exclusive

One in six Americans now owns a smart speaker, which is around 39 million people. Smart speakers can connect to other smart gadgets around the home, such as thermostats and security cameras, to make it more energy efficient, convenient, and to boost security. Using smart technology on your houseboat offers the same perks, with the addition of things like a compact robotic vacuum cleaner helping to save on valuable cupboard space while ensuring your living space is kept clean at all times.

Security and pet cameras

Your houseboat is your entire life so it can understandably be worrying to leave it, especially somewhere new and unfamiliar, while you go to get supplies, socialize or otherwise spend time ashore. Smart cameras can help to alleviate some of this worry as they’ll deter people and you can check in via your smartphone whenever you feel like it for peace of mind. If you have a furry best friend living aboard who can’t come to the shops with you, pet cameras let you check in on them and they can see you too, helping to relieve any anxiety either of you may have. Some more sophisticated pet cameras can also dispense treats and alert you when your dog is near the camera waiting to see you.

Energy monitoring and smart thermostats

Using energy wisely is important, but even more so when you’re traveling on a houseboat and have limited supplies. Smart automation systems allow you to monitor how much energy everything uses via your smartphone, from your appliances and lights to your entertainment systems and smartphone charging. This can help you to use it more wisely as well as conserve it as you learn what you can turn off that isn’t being used that you wouldn’t have thought about before. Similarly, using a smart thermostat, which has become a common household piece of tech, can help you to heat and cool rooms individually and save energy.

Convenient smart gadgets for easier living

Things like smart light bulbs are growing in popularity as they can be turned on and off from your phone, the brightness altered, and color changed to suit whatever mood you’re in. Using these on you houseboat can add an extra layer of security for when you’re ashore and want to make your home look like someone is inside. Robotic vacuum cleaners are great as they take up a lot less space than a traditional cleaner, saving that vital cupboard space, and they can pick up things as you go to keep your houseboat’s flooring clean all the time. For all smart gadgets, it’s worth having a home hub that can control the gadgets via your voice that it can pick up from across the room, such as Amazon’s Alexa or Google Assistant.

As smart home technology becomes more common and affordable it’s inevitable that houseboats will more readily take advantage of it too, with companies manufacturing tech specific to life on houseboats. Smart technology can make houseboats more energy efficient, cheaper to run, easier to maintain, and even more enjoyable.

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