How to control your home from your Smart TV
See who’s at the front door and turn down the lights from your TV remote with the world’s first Internet of Things-connected TVs from Samsung…
17 Mar 2016
Picture the scene: you’re sat on the sofa in front of the TV and the remote in your hand controls not only what you’re watching, but also other devices around your home.
From your TV remote you can check on your sleeping baby, or see who’s at the front door. You can set the mood for a movie, or switch off your lights and TV at the same time.
Introducing Smart TVs to smart homes
In a smart home, everyday gadgets can talk to one another over your Wi-Fi. You then control them using an app on your phone.
When connected to Wi-Fi these ‘dumb’ devices (everything from fridges and door locks to light bulbs and thermostats) become smart.
These smart devices make-up the so-called "Internet of Things".
Samsung SmartThings is one such system. With it, you fit tiny sensors to everything from doors and windows to power sockets and water pipes.
You then get real-time updates to your smartphone when, say, someone comes through a door, or a window opens unexpectedly. You can also start a kettle boiling, or switch on a light merely by tapping your phone.
What’s more, SmartThings is compatible with devices made by other people. So as well as SmartThings sensors you can add security cameras, door locks and thermostats – all controlled through the SmartThings app.
Now Samsung has built SmartThings technology into its new SUHD TVs.
Bringing the smart home to the masses through the telly
Though it is becoming more established, smart home tech remains relatively niche. It’s still the kind of thing purchased by young, tech-savvy folk rather than your mum and dad.
However, Samsung hopes to bring the smart home to a much wider audience by building SmartThings into their new Smart TVs. And, because TVs are mass market it makes this technology easier to access for everyone.
How to use SmartThings on your TV
Samsung’s 2016 SUHD TVs have a built-in SmartThings hub, which is normally bought separately.
Your new TV will come with the SmartThings Extend, a small USB-like dongle that plugs into your TV. Once you’ve done this, switch on your TV and connect to Wi-Fi.
On the TV’s hub screen, you’ll see the SmartThings app alongside things like Netflix, YouTube and regular channels.
Highlight the app, and then select the option you want from the boxes that appear above. It’s really that easy to use.
4 cool things to do with SmartThings on your TV
1. Set the mood for a movie… Cinema Mode dims the lights, selects the right TV picture mode and adjusts your soundbar – all at the push of a button
2. See who’s at the door… when movement is detected at your front door, a pop-up window will appear on your TV showing footage of your porch. You’ll need a Wi-Fi camera and a SmartThings motion sensor.
3. Let your friend in… once you’ve seen who’s at the front door, you can unlock it from your TV remote. You’ll need a SmartThings-compatible door lock, as well as the motion sensor and the camera.
4. Check on your baby… with a baby camera connected to your SmartThings network you can see your sleeping child on your TV screen at the push of a button.
Don’t forget: you’ll need the correct SmartThings sensors or third-party gadgets for the above. Find your perfect SmartThings set up.
How to get SmartThings on your TV
You need a Samsung SUHD Smart TV, and a SmartThings Extend – a small, USB-like dongle that plugs into your TV. The Extend dongle is provided free with your new TV.
You’ll need Smart Things sensors, or other compatible devices (there as many as 200). And of course, you’ll need home Wi-Fi.