IntelligentHome: Smart Home For Smart Owners

TWC IntelligentHome Smart Home

IntelligentHome is Time Warner Cable’s offering of home automation and security features for customers of their other digital services. There are companies that offer home automation and security systems, but only the Cable TV companies can bundle these services with TV, High Speed Internet (HSI), and Home Phone to offer both savings and convenience.

Let’s take a look at what this new “Complete Security and Home Management System” from Time Warner Cable brings to the table.

Home Security Aspects of IntelligentHome

One of the major selling points for companies like ADT with their home security and automation products and services is that they allow you to see live video from in and around your house from anywhere. These monitoring centers never leave home or go on vacation. Your system is monitored at all times so that emergencies can be responded to, even when you’re not there.

IntelligentHome takes this one step further by providing battery backup (which is, admittedly, quite easy and inexpensive to install) to ensure that the system is always powered. There are numerous sensors that are part of the system that provide a sense of security and peace of mind through intrusion detection and other occurrences. Sensors included in basic systems include:

  • Smoke detectors to warn of fire dangers.
  • Sensors that detect the presence of water to warn of broken pipes and floods.
  • Sensors that detect the breakage of glass doors and windows.
  • Door and window switches to announce when a door or window opens.
  • Carbon monoxide detectors.
  • Advanced motion detectors.
  • Indoor and outdoor video cameras.

Basic Features of Home Automation

The products some other companies in the home security and automation market offer a higher level of user convenience and system interaction that gives them more control over systems in their homes. These are things like home theaters and remote operation of locks. IntelligentHome does deliver the most common automation features that contain the following sensors:

  • Thermostat
  • Lamp adapters to give control over low power devices
  • Appliance adapters to give control over higher power devices

Multiple Ways to Control Your System

Every home automation/security system has to have a way to use it. Over the years, these have gone from simple keypads with simple eight-digit LED displays to completely interactive touchpads, mobile apps, and web access. Any company that doesn’t offer these options better have some other very appealing features to stand a chance to compete in this tight market.

IntelligentHome Android
Time Warner Cable’s IntelligentHome app for your iPhones or Android phones (pictured) has several great features.

Part of the equipment that makes up an IntelligentHome system includes two types of keypads. The first type is one you might install in bedrooms throughout the house and allows instant access to the emergency features of the system. The other piece of equipment is a fully interactive seven-inch touchscreen that gives access to both security and home automation features. You also get a couple of key fobs that allow you to arm and disarm the alarm from up to 60-feet away and a panic feature.

For those times when you’re away from home, complete control over all aspects of the system are available in a variety of ways.

  • Did you remember to turn off the lights and turn down the thermostat when you left home? No problem, fire up the web app and make the needed changes.
  • But what if you’re stuck in traffic? Grab your smartphone and launch the mobile app.
  • What if I’m sitting in a meeting and I can’t use my phone? No problem, launch the mobile app on your tablet while you’re taking notes and bringing up information for the meeting on your tablet.

There are apps for both Apple devices and devices running Android. I’m a little disappointed that there isn’t an app for BlackBerry owners, though.

My Final Impressions

This is the perfect home automation and security solution for those that want the convenience and peace of mind, but don’t want to run all the wires.

All the sensors are either ZigBee wireless devices, Wi-Fi 802.11n devices, or both. I also liked that the cameras are both true VGA as well as day/night capable.

Another pretty cool thing is that the sensors have LEDs that allow you to tell their status at a glance, although, these LEDs are muted so as not to be obnoxious. The fact that you can easily add sensors to the system is also cool.

Outside of a Blackberry app, IntelligentHome from Time Warner Cable has enough great features for the price to make most customers very happy.

Photo Credit: Bobosh_T