Love the look of big, open windows, but don’t love the lack of privacy? Aside from making your private business very public, leaving windows uncovered can absolutely kill your electric bill.
That’s because big windows let in light—a lot of it. This can be awesome in the winter, allowing that warming sunlight to generate a little free heat. However, letting all of that sunshine in during those summer months will heat up those same rooms. And having multiple fans, central air and other energy hogs won’t save you from that type of blistering heat!
Of course, you don’t have to opt for ugly curtains or even blinds. There are plenty of cool looking electronic window shades out there. But why block a great view when you don’t have to? There are also plenty of “smart glass” solutions. These windows are a perfect addition to the Electronic House, since they can actually tint at the touch of a button. They not only block out the sun, but can also give you a little privacy, when needed.
Looking for an alternative to those electronic window shades and other coverings? Check out these three smart glass solutions.
This WiFi-enabled window shade is insanely easy to install. That’s because you don’t have to take out any existing windows. Instead, you can just measure the window and cut the Sonte Film to size. It has an electrostatic cling adhesive back, which allows you peel and stick the Film right onto the glass. No electronic window shades are needed. Once it’s installed, just place the quarter-sized proprietary conducting clip on the Film and plug in the extra-slim cord to the WiFi-enabled transformer. From there, Sonte Film is paired to a smartphone app, so users can turn existing windows from opaque to clear in less than a second. As an added bonus, Sonte says that the Film can even double as a projection screen.
Want your shades lowered? Do it in seconds from a smartphone. Not sure if you locked the door when you left the house or left the garage door open? Again, it’s as easy as pressing a button on your smartphone.
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MSRP: Contact for pricing
For More Information: Sonte
Like Sonte Film, this option can be applied to any new or existing smooth glass surface. Once installed, you can switch the film from clear to frosted (opaque) with the click of a button—or the company’s smartphone app. The Self Adhesive option has peel-and-stick Smart Cling backing, while the Non Adhesive uses 3M double-sided clear tape (included). Both can deliver privacy and energy savings on demand that’s compatible with many home automation systems. Also worth mentioning is that the company offers a hardwired system, as well as DIY options in seven colors.
MSRP: Starts at $159
For More Information: Smart Tint
This company makes several smart glass solutions. The most expensive is switchable privacy glass, which replaces your existing windows. It comes in different colors, tints and coatings, with soundproofing available as an option as well. Lamination Film is designed for people that want the longevity of finished glass, but want to use existing windows. This option goes in between panes of glass, polycarbonate and/or other materials. And finally, the easiest solutions fall under the Self-Adhesive Electronic Privacy Film lineup. Available pre-cut by your dealer to your specifications or in a variety of easy-to-trim standard sizes, this option has clear adhesive backing that securely fastens to existing windows. All three options can be controlled through wall switches and dimmers, remote control kits, and/or apps for iOS and Android devices.
MSRP: Prices vary
For More Information: InvisiShade