Kash Pervez is one of our Telstra Store managers, and has a home filled to the brim with smart home devices. He shares with us some ways in which his day-to-day life has changed with the introduction of this tech, and his love of voice assistants.

My first experience with smart home devices was when I invested in a camera to monitor my garage door. Oddly, it would often open by itself after I had closed it, and I used to get worried at work wondering whether it was secure or not. Having a camera set up that I could watch live anywhere (in the world!) from my mobile phone gave me peace of mind.

Today my life is completely different with a smart home. Things have changed so much since setting up that camera in my garage – now as I’m driving up to the house I ask my Google Assistant in my handset to open the garage door, and soon I’m parked and asking Google Assistant to close it behind me. I just say, “Hey Google, close garage door”, and magic happens. From there, when I walk in I can speak to my home for everything; from turning on the sprinklers, the TV, all the lights around the house and even the little things like turning on the kettle and fan.

Knowing that I can check in on my home from wherever I am in the world is one of the biggest benefits for me. I was in Italy last year when a parcel was delivered to my home. The postman pressed my smart bell, I received a notification on my handset in Rome, and then spoke to him and told him where to hide the parcel all through live streaming, which was mind blowing!

While away, I would also randomly turn lights on and off to make it look like someone was home. When Telstra Smart Home was released, I couldn’t wait to set it up alongside my other smart home devices. The Telstra Smart Home® app now provides the ability to switch to “Away” mode – a setting that gives the impression that someone is home through activities like lighting automations.

Since getting my voice activated speakers, I’ve found I’m using these more and more every day – I love Google Home and have a few Google Home Minis around the house. One voice command to my Google Home Mini can set the mood, set certain lights to medium brightness and my Phillips Hue lighting to different colours for a movie night.

I talk to people all the time who are nervous about the idea of setting up their homes with smart devices. I really think one of the easiest ways to do this is with the Telstra Smart Home Automation and Energy Starter Kit or the Watch and Monitor Starter Kit.

These are so simple to set up – all you need to do is to be set up with a fixed broadband plan and home Wi-Fi, then download the Telstra Smart Home app and follow the instructions to activate and pair your devices. Then you can start doing things like plugging in an appliance, like a fan or TV and home theatre, into a smart power plug, and controlling it either from the App on your phone or with your voice if you have a smart speaker.

I’m sure I’m not the only one who sometimes wonders if I’ve closed a door or window in the house after I’ve left. Door and window sensors from the Watch and Monitor Starter Kit, let you check this from your handset and also to receive a notification on your phone if a door or window is opened.

Telstra Smart Home is already bringing out exciting new devices, such as the Roost smart smoke alarm battery – which could be a great benefit for people. If someone wasn’t home and their smoke alarm was triggered – they can now be notified on their handset, and can see what’s happening with their smart camera.

Telstra customers are now able to choose between a Google Home Mini or Amazon Echo Dot* when signing up to the $124/m Smart Home internet bundle. Eligible customers can also receive a bonus of up to $100 to use on any Telstra Smart Home device on our online store when they activate their smart home service before 30 April 2018. Conditions apply. Min cost $3,075 over 24mths with $99 standard installation fee.

You can find more information on our bundles here.

* Google Home Mini and Amazon Echo Dot are not compatible with the Telstra Watch and Monitor Starter Kit. Compatible Telstra Smart Home devices can be purchased separately.

Note: Telstra Smart Home requires a home broadband connection and home Wi-Fi network and must be activated via the free iOS or Android Telstra Smart Home App (data charges may apply). Telstra Smart Home Bonus $100: Activate your Telstra Smart Home by 30 April 18 to receive a one-time $100 activation bonus to purchase additional smart home devices from our online store.  Bonus must be used in one transaction and redeemed by 7 May 18. The bonus (or any unused portion) is not transferable or redeemable for cash.