Smart homes promised us a future where many of the daily processes in our homes would run completely automated. The home of the future was supposed to be able to guess exactly what we wanted, when we wanted it and then actualize a process to meet that want. However, these devices and processes have not really been wide adopted, after years of IoT devices being available in the market.
Renters and buyers are increasingly valuing homes integrated with technology more with one recent survey done by Wakefield Research showing that 86% of millenial home renters would be willing to pay a premium for homes with smart systems. Top of their list of wants were keyless entry systems and smart climate controls.
One of the major problems with widespread adoption of these smart IoT systems has been security. For the home to be truly automated and enable actions like entering your home by having your phone in proximity, adjusting temperature automatically through the sensors learning your preferences or setting the lighting to your liking at certain times to the day, massive amounts of data need to be collected and then processed by AI and machine learning systems.
Questions still remain on the security of this data and its protection from malicious actors. According to researchers at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, most off the shelf IoT smart home devices are extremely vulnerable to hacking. If this data is not secure, then widespread adoption of these devices will always be a distant dream.
Blockchain is a perfect way to secure and share this data with permissions. Essentially a blockchain system is a database that is immutable and one where permissions can be enforced rigorously. Spreading the responsibility for allowing access to the data across a wide network means that there is no one central server holding the data that can be compromised.
Additionally, storing that data on such a distributed ledger allows homeowners to pick and choose the data they want to share and with which parties very easily. If collected on a wide scale, data on a particular application among thousands of individuals can be fed through a machine learning or AI system to create smart plans that automate homes to make them more efficient.
This data can now be leveraged by property managers to create smart plans for everything from climate control in shared areas to allocation of parking spaces. Blockchain, AI and IoT can work together seamlessly to collect data, share data, process data and then utilize this data to create convenient and resource friendly plans.