A Conversation with SkyBell: Is Home Automation Helping Us Stay Safe?

Written by | Updated July 30, 2015

Skybell doorbell comments on if home automation is helping families stay safer

Many of us have questions about home automation and how this burgeoning technology can help make our homes safer and more secure. In particular, non-traditional and DIY home security options that incorporate Wi-Fi, smartphone, and video technologies pique a lot of consumer interest and raise a decent amount of questions. To help give you a peek into the present state and future possibilities of the industry, SafeWise spoke with Andrew Thomas, co-founder of SkyBell.

Is the IoT (Internet of Things) presenting a security risk to families and their homes?

There is a lot of buzz right now about security and the IoT space. With connected hardware that provides monitoring, sensors, and access control, I would say that the IoT space has the potential to bring significantly more security to people’s homes. SkyBell gives users the convenience and safety of 24-hour Wi-Fi video access, so they can see, hear, and speak to visitors from their smartphones while at home or on-the-go. With SkyBell’s on-demand feature, users can also check-in on their door at any time from the app. SkyBell, and our peers, take the security and integrity of our devices very seriously, and they are as safe as any other device that is currently connected to your home’s Wi-Fi.

Do you think that smart homes and home automation technologies are headed in the right or wrong direction?

For the most part, I like the direction of the smart home. While we might not be achieving a smart home ecosystem as quickly as people had hoped, home automation technologies are making great strides. The home automation industry looks a lot like the first days of the Internet or social media booms, and there are a few great companies developing very compelling products that solve a real need. For the most part, these needs are saving money and home security. As home automation has continued to take off in terms of attention, dozens of devices have reached the marketplace in the hopes of grabbing a piece of the pie. That said, a large majority of these devices can be considered “periphery” devices, or devices that don’t necessarily solve a real compelling need or problem. I think we’ll continue to see consumers drawn to devices that address real needs, and those hero use cases will continue to drive the home automation space.

What is the smartest and easiest way for families to secure their homes from intruders and burglars?

The best way to secure your home from intruders is by using smart home security products to give you more awareness and control over your home. Families should consider their most vulnerable spots and implement cameras and sensors. That way, they can be alerted when someone is present, and they’re able to see and interact with that person. In the case of the SkyBell Video Doorbell, we are both of those things. SkyBell users can see, hear, and speak to the person at their front door, and the motion sensor alerts you when intruders are breaking into your home. A one-off product like SkyBell or a Nest Cam can bring you an affordable, DIY security solution. Home automation has made it easy and affordable to use connected products individually or together to achieve a smarter, more secure home.

With technologies like those offered by SkyBell, it looks like more people are gaining access to quality home security options. At the end of the day, however, one question still looms: how can companies integrate these innovative devices into a comprehensive home security solution for consumers who choose to forgo professional monitoring?


Written by Elli Bishop

Elli is a safety and security expert for the Safewise team. In her free time, she enjoys playing tennis, practicing yoga, and spending time with friends and family. Learn more

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