We use ‘I have a smart thermostat’ to mean ‘I have a thermostat that connects to my WiFi’. That seems like a generous use of the word ‘smart’.

If the thermostat could intelligently predict the temperature rising and control blinds for example, that might make it truly smart. The reason it can’t, is usually not that the company making the device hasn’t thought of it or even tried, but because these applications would require interoperability with other sensors and actuators, for which standards are still emerging.

As we’re seeing more and more of those cases emerge, the word ‘smart’ might be getting an image makeover!

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