Smart Home Solution: Practical Insights and Tips

Nov 30, 2017

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IoT and smart home automation are becoming ubiquitous. Qulix always stays at the technological cutting edge.

The company has recently completed its ‘Smart Home’ project in collaboration with Nero Electronics.

Qulix team was responsible for the development of the server side, integration layer, and the client’s part of the application. The project has taken 1.5 years. The solution was developed using Java, Go, NodeJS, WebRTC and Cordova HTML, as well as JavaScript for hybrid apps.

Target customers

The project was focused on developing a solution for a mass user without a profound technical background. A typical ‘Smart Home’ owner was considered to be a member of the middle class living in a private apartment or small house. In fact, a clear understanding of the target audience is highly important for any project; ‘Smart Home’ isn’t an exception, as user stories had an impact on the choice of technologies.

We used wireless channel for data transmission. It is very convenient for our target audience. Users don’t have to damage their décor by drilling holes and placing power cords.

What was the main challenge of the project?

The most complex part was the simultaneous delivery of both the hardware and the software elements. Ideally, it should be avoided. However, Qulix took up this challenge in order to enable the client to launch the product as soon as possible. Thus, the project was realized by applying Agile.

 Product’s Key Features

  • Greater operating comfort

The solution allows users easily controlling their smart home devices via Internet connectivity. So-called ‘white’ IP address is not required, which means the system can be operated remotely just by using a mobile app – from anywhere and at anytime.

  • High usability level

The main focus of the project was on solution’s functionality and usability.

The product owner, designers, analysts, hardware, front-end and back-end developers had been working together in one team. They had to adjust their work to changes and requirements of other team members in order to ensure a smooth performance of the hardware and software.

  • Flexibility

‘Smart Home’ by Qulix is a comprehensive solution which, however, can be easily extended. It can be ‘built’ like from LEGO bricks having an integrated control center, server, interface, etc. For instance, users can install various kinds of sensors in just one room, and later turn the entire house into a ‘smart home’.

The application is adaptable to various scenarios and suitable for any budget.

Tips and recommendations

It is recommended to use the existing communication protocol, e.g., Z-Wave, Bluetooth. Though they still have some drawbacks, the technology is advancing. Thus, using one of the current solutions allows saving resources required for creating an own one.

Before starting the development process, it is essential to identify the target group. Who will leave in the ‘Smart Home’? Which functions does he/she need? For example, the wireless technology which was implemented for our solution isn’t suitable for facilities with a high safety risk, e.g., fire hazard, patient monitoring, etc.

And, last but not least, a special attention should be paid to app usability, i.e. testing and analytics (usage scenario, end-devices, and interfaces).

In conclusion, it should be said that IoT solution development is a highly complex process. Primarily, it is necessary to define the target audience, analyze needs in order to select the right technologies and develop the required features. Besides, it is indispensable to organize a smooth cooperation between software and hardware development team. Transparency and coordinated teamwork at every stage will ensure the success of the project.

Find out more about Qulix Smart Home App Development