KNX or wireless? Two types of Smart Homes explained.

KNX or wireless? Two types of Smart Homes explained.

Did you know that there are two ways of setting up a Smart Home? Whether you choose a hardwired KNX system or a wireless network depends mostly on your property and your individual needs. While both options have the same goal, their manners of transfer and installation differ in various respects.

Anyone eager to set up a smart home should understand the difference between these two types of smart home. Knowing the advantages of each system will allow for greater planning of a more effective and flexible smart home system. Read on to discover which system could suit you and which products from Gira can be used.

Gira G1 an der Wand
Whether KNX or eNet SMART HOME: the Gira G1 represents the ideal control centre for both systems.

The hardwired KNX: Futureproof & sustainable.

The first type of smart home setup is called KNX. This is an international, open standard designed to run automated building functions. In practical terms, this means lighting, heating, blinds/shutters and entertainment. It can even be linked up to create customised IFTTT (“If This, Then That”) functions. The system is “hardwired” into your home, with wires running directly through the walls. In fact, it can be seen as a central nervous system for your home. KNX wiring (or “bus systems”) integrated into existing buildings (such as older properties) but they are also commonly installed in newer homes that are destined to be smart.

How exactly is a KNX smart home controlled? For homeowners, multiple options are possible: A smartphone, a wall unit such as Gira G1 or even something like the Gira pushbutton sensor 4. Of course, between the bus system and control devices is one important aspect that links it all together. This is a smart home hub, such as the Gira HomeServer.

Gira Tastsensor 4 weiss im Badezimmer
Elegance in KNX: The Gira push button sensor 4 serves as a switch for blinds and light in the smart home.

The Gira HomeServer: The command centre for your KNX smart home.

After a long day at work, you’re tired and grumpy. Walking up the drive towards your newly-built smart home, you feel it beckoning you. Swiping your finger over your Gira Keyless In unit, the door opens and your hall light switches on. From hidden speakers, soothing music begins playing. You close the door behind you and take a moment to rest on the sofa. Slowly, you feel the stress melting away.

While not visible, the Gira HomeServer is sitting tucked away and controlling each function of your home. The lights came on the moment you stepped into the house thanks to an IFTTT (“If This, Then That”) function that you pre-programmed yourself. This function can be changed at any time, with more being added when necessary.

In the age of data security, you also want to know that your home is secure. With KNX Secure ensures that your smart home meets the highest encryption standard, preventing digital attacks against the infrastructure of your home. Unauthorised access and manipulation has no place here.

Gira Produkt HomeServer schwarz
The Gira HomeServer is the sleek, central command unit for your smart home.

Be free & be wireless with Bluetooth and WiFi.

Whether KNX or wireless, your smart home is there to serve you. Yet hardwired KNX systems aren’t the only option. The wireless alternative can command your smart home devices via Bluetooth and WiFi. Unlike a KNX smart home, wireless setups are a bit more flexible and designed for pretty much any living space. Instead of running a central nervous system through the walls of your home, devices are linked up with one another.

Since standards for linking individual devices from different manufacturers can differ. Luckily, there are also options for ensuring that each devices works smoothly with one another. This means getting a smart home hub, such as the Gira eNet SMART HOME.

Gira E2 eNet Funk Bedienaufsatz
With the retrofittable Gira eNet radio control top units you control any devices in eNet SMART HOME.

Gira eNet SMART HOME allows for quick, easy setup of a wireless smart home.

You’re lounging at home on a summer’s day, the living room flooded with light. Basking in the sun, you’re enjoying the heat until it gets a little too warm. Sunlight is also shining on the TV screen, obscuring your view. Reaching for your smartphone, you open the Gira eNet SMART HOME app and roll the blinds down. Instant shade! You’re also a lot cooler, and more comfortable.

The eNet SMART HOME server isn’t visible, but it works quietly behind the scenes to communicate with your home’s smart devices via Bluetooth and WiFi. It can control any device you’ve linked up to it: temperature, light, music or even your shutters and blinds. All controllable through a device such as your smartphone, a wall unit like the Gira G1. You can even hook it up to a voice assistant like Amazon Alexa or the Google Assistant. Yes, you can command your wireless smart home by simply asking.

This is also great for when you have guests. Perhaps you don’t want to give them complete access to your wireless smart home’s functions. While anyone can ask Alexa to turn down the lights, eNet SMART HOME also comes with a number of handheld controls and wall devices such as the Gira G1 or the wireless operating top unit.

In conjunction with a third-party app, the HomeServer can be used to set up voice control with the HomeServer.

Which should I choose: KNX or wireless?

Your choice between KNX or wireless comes down to what you need, as well as your living situation. If you’re interested in building or renovating a home for long-term use, a KNX smart home is the best way to go. It can be completely customized to your needs and built using an international standard. Since your own home will probably be bigger, fitting with a Gira HomeServer ensures that you have full command of your home at all times. For those who prefer more flexibility in terms of location, Gira eNet SMART HOME offers a great alternative that can easily be set up and brought with you. Easy to retrofit, it doesn’t take long to set up and have your smart home running once more.

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