Back to School: Creating a Smart Dorm Room with Home Automation Devices

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With the fall semester upon us, many college students will spend the next few months living in a dormitory. Whether you’re a freshman experiencing dorm life for the first time, or a returning student with a few semesters of dormitory living under your belt, you can certainly do a lot to improve your living quarters. The proliferation of home automaton devices is making smart homes ubiquitous. Your dorm room should be no different. It’s a living space that will benefit from a system that can control devices such as smart plugs, lighting, doors, sensors, and doors.

Getting Started

There’s no right or wrong way to implement smart devices in your dorm room. Perhaps you just want to control your lighting. Maybe you want something a bit more involved that includes multiple compatible devices communicating with each other in an ecosystem. The beauty of home automation is that there is no shortage of devices available to suit your needs. The combinations and possibilities are endless.

For the sake of brevity, we’ll focus on a handful of devices suitable for a dorm room, but you’re certainly not limited to these devices.

Lighting

Being able to control your lighting from anywhere in the world is awesome. When plugged into a light fixture, the white Hue A19 bulb, from Philips, allows you to do just that when used in conjunction with the Philips Hue Bridge. You’ll be able to create customized schedules via the Hue app for iOS and Android. With a lifespan of 25,000 hours, the light bulb will last for many years to come.

Philips Hue A19 Bulb

Smart Plugs

Smart plugs and power strips allow you to control a plugged-in device from anywhere. With TP-Link’s HS300 Smart Wi-Fi Power Strip, you’ll be able to control up to six plugged-in devices individually. Additionally, it has three USB ports for charging devices. A hub is not required, thanks to Wi-Fi connectivity. Simply use the Kasa app for iOS and Android for remote management. Voice control is available via Alexa, Google Assistant, and Microsoft Cortana.

TP-Link HS300 Smart Wi-Fi Power Strip

Sensors

Smart sensors keep your space safe by alerting you via a mobile app of the event or activity they are designed to sense when activity is detected. They ensure that all is well in your space while you’re away. A device like the Eve Motion Sensor will detect motion, while Samsung’s SmartThings Multipurpose Sensor will alert you when a door or window has been opened or closed.

Samsung SmartThings Multipurpose Sensor

Wireless Alarm Kits

Lastly, keeping your dorm room secure should be paramount. While living in a dorm means you usually can’t hardwire devices in your room, wireless solutions exist that can be implemented for a seamless security solution. Wireless alarm kits offer security via multiple smart devices bundled to work together. Buying a kit takes the guesswork out of buying devices like sensors separately. The Bosch B810K RADION Wireless Alarm Kit is one example. The kit includes a wireless receiver that can connect compatible RADION wireless devices like motion detectors, panic buttons, and door/window contacts. Also included in the kit is a PIR motion sensor and two surface mount door/window contacts for monitoring doors and windows.

Bosch B810K RADION Wireless Alarm Kit

These are just a few devices that can get you started on your journey toward a smart dorm room. What other smart devices do you think would fit well in a dorm room? Let us know in the Comments section, below!

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