So you’ve selected a service professional for an upcoming smart home automation project. You’ve done your research, spoken with their engineers, seen examples of their work, and maybe started designing what your smart home systems will look like and what smart devices you’ll want. Before you commit to the project, have you considered the smart home support services they offer once your system has been installed?
Why smart home support services are important
Your new home technology, like any other home system, will require some level of ongoing maintenance. For example, occasional updates, troubleshooting of any issues, and the inevitable network outage are all to be expected at some point. Even the most well-designed system will need to be updated or can run into issues when there is a power or internet outage.
This is where a smart home integrator specializing in smart home support comes into play. Just like your tech support at work, smart home support is constantly monitoring for important security updates, network reliability (and cybersecurity) and hardware malfunctions. When something goes awry in your smart home, they’re often already aware and working on a fix, usually before you even realize something has gone wrong.
In today’s homes where just about everything is connected to the internet, maintaining a smart home support service isn’t just something nice to have, it’s essential to keeping your home running as you expect and ensuring nothing goes wrong.
What you should look for when choosing smart home support
When choosing the right company for smart home support services, there’s a few things you should ensure they do or have. After all, this is your home they’ll be supporting and monitoring. You don’t want to skimp when it comes to keeping your home running correctly.
1. Guaranteed response times
Put simply; technology isn’t perfect. Even the most state-of-the-art tech or software will almost certainly experience hiccups, failures, or obsolescence at some point. And as with all technology, it doesn’t fail at the most opportune times. So when things to stop working, you want to know that your home will be up and running again quickly. The company you choose to work with for smart home support should have a policy specifically relating to response times in their service agreement to help deal with these issues. Additionally, you want to ensure that they’re looking at your support requests quickly to triage your issue. A lightbulb that isn’t working right doesn’t need to be fixed immediately, but with a breach in your security system, time is of the essence.
When inquiring about smart home support services, make sure to ask the integrator not only what their SLA (service-level agreement) times are, but how they triage tickets based on severity and urgency.
2. Cybersecurity expertise
When you have dozens (if not hundreds) of smart home devices in your home, you’re putting your home and data at risk of a cyber breach. A well-built network with VLANs and firewalls is the first step to keeping your home safe. The second step is keeping the network up to date and properly monitored. This is where a smart home integrator with cybersecurity experience comes in. The right integrator will know when important security updates and protocols need to be installed for your system and will help you develop a playbook detailing what to do when a breach does happen to mitigate damages and keep you online.
3. Levels of support
Every home is unique, as is every smart home system. Some homes are smaller city flats with only a few shades and lights integrated into a smart home system, while others are sprawling mansions with hundreds of smart home devices built in. Just like every smart home system is unique, so should be every smart home support service. A reputable smart home company will offer different tiers of support services. The higher the tier, the more onsite visits you’ll get in a year and the quicker your SLA response time will be.
When you ask your integrator about smart home support services, ask what packages they have available and what they recommend. You might not need someone to come out to your home and run maintenance yearly for a smaller home, whereas a big smart home system might need onsite visits quarterly. If you’re not sure which smart home support package is right for you, your smart home integrator can steer you in the right direction.
4. Remote abilities
Your home is your private space. The less people you have to welcome into your home, the better. So when something in your smart home system isn’t working correctly, the ability to remotely fix the issue is huge. With remote monitoring, information about the status and health of your devices and network is securely transmitted to a central “dashboard.” Here it can be viewed by your service provider. This way, your home technology is remotely monitored 24/7. These platforms provide us with remote troubleshooting capabilities, so systems can be updated or fixed without anyone having to physically come to your home. Often, engineers are able to proactively fix any issues they see on your home network before you even notice something is wrong!
Why TSP Smart Spaces is the best fit in almost any home
TSP (originally Tech Superpowers) was founded in 1992 by Michael Oh while he was still at MIT studying Aerospace Engineering. Since then, TSP has been providing IT support and cybersecurity services to Boston-based ventures. In 2016 (though we started unofficially much earlier), we launched TSP Smart Spaces to keep up with our growing demand for residential technology integration. Though TSP Smart Spaces operates under a different name than Tech Superpowers, our DNA is rooted in the same commitment to process-driven, systems-led approach to technology.
What this means for you, is that every support issue you submit is treated with the same attention and processes as our biggest clients (the Boston Celtics among them!) Though we design our systems to hold up to the highest standards, updates and unforseen issues are unavoidable. But thanks to our remote monitoring capabilities and robust experience diagnosing and troubleshooting tech issues, you can rest easy knowing your home is in safe hands.
What if we didn’t build your smart home system?
That’s ok. Whether you’re unhappy with your current provider or have a home where the smart home system is becoming unusable or obsolete, we’re here to help you. Contact us to get the conversation started. From there, we’ll schedule an onsite visit so we can meet with you, evaluate your system, and provide concrete steps to bring your home up to our standards. Once your home is operating the way you want it to, we’ll be there for anytime something breaks, or just doesn’t work the way you think it should.
How to get started
That’s the easy part. Just give us a call or fill out a contact form. We’re happy to chat with you about what our smart home support services look like, and how they might work with you and your home. Even if you’re in the early design phases, it’s never too early to start thinking about how your home will be supported once it’s built and you’ve moved in! We’re here for any and all of your questions about smart homes.
Learn more about our smart home automation offerings, conference room AV solutions, or schedule a consultation with us. Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, call us at 617 267 3030, or visit our contact page.
Further reading: DIY Smart Home Solutions vs. Professional Integration