Single Apps In A Smart Home

Remember when cable boxes, DVD players, and gaming systems first started sharing space on the TV stand? All those tangled wires bunching against the wall? What about juggling remotes for each system and another remote just to turn on the TV! Then along came the coveted universal remote…that still didn’t work with everything. 

At Hive, a premier home automation company in Tampa Bay, we are often asked which approach is best for controlling home technology. We guarantee that choosing a single app solution for your home works if you value simplicity over performance.

Systems connected to single applications are the simplest form of home automation. It can be the key difference between having a few smart devices and having a smart home. 

Personal preference is an integral factor here. While convenience is a major benefit of a single app solution, it can lead to some features being restricted. 

In this article, we’ve highlighted the common home automation category where single app use shines. Below we cover,

Photo of the Sonos S2 app | Image: Sonos

  • Audio
  • Video
  • Security
  • Lighting Control

Single versus Multiple


How do you listen to music? Do you like switching from playlist to playlist? Are you an avid podcast or audiobook listener? 

With a single app, you could adjust the volume of your speakers and play your favorite artist with two swipes. Take Sonos speakers as an example. Popular and reliable, the app for these speakers allows you to connect to all Sonos speakers in the house simultaneously. 

The Sonos mobile app houses connections to all your streaming apps (Spotify, Audible, Apple Music) and smart assistants like Alexa, Siri, and Google Home. Instead of opening and closing each app individually, the user will be able to open the Sonos app and choose from the settings options.

Other smart speakers like Bose also connect to streaming platforms, along with radio stations. By using the single app, you can set up certain playlists not just for activities, but for specific rooms. 

Single apps elevate the audio experience and allow you to set the playlist for your life with one easy swipe. 


This is another area where single app options shine. Among unified control applications, video is the most widely adopted. Smart technology has come a long way since those old box televisions. Many companies are working to enhance the home entertainment experience. 

The Amazon Fire TV Stick has dedicated Netflix and Hulu buttons, with Alexa integration. Apple TV boxes are now controlled via digital remotes built into products such as iPhones, iPads, and iPods. 

Traditional control systems do a fantastic job unifying the TV/movie watching experience. Even without a smart home system, it’s easy to find a smart TV that keeps track of your streaming services, allowing you to switch easily between cable and the internet.


Security is most effective when its control system is the same as the rest of the house. By using a smart home operating system like Control4, every device connects to the same app. This includes security, allowing you to check your front door in the same swipe as turning on your TV. 


A properly designed lighting system won’t need much app interaction. In combination with existing light switches, smart lighting is controlled via a single app. Solutions like Lutron and others can leverage “black box” connectivity behind the scenes across apps like Amazon Alexa, Sonos, and others to enable easy voice control and scheduling.

Single Apps In A Smart Home

What is the difference between these smart devices and a smart home? When a home is fully automated, it’s more than having a universal remote and some speakers. 

By tricking out your home, you create the ultimate single app. Imagine walking into your home, and with a simple command, your house creates a scene. The lights come up, the TV turns on your favorite streaming platform, the kitchen speakers play your cooking playlist, and the shades close. 

By using systems like Control4, this process becomes simpler than ever. Accessed via a tablet, your entire home is available in the palm of your hand and the comfort of your couch. Control your environmentally friendly lights while turning on your fireplace. Greet friends and family at your front door while the latest Netflix hit appears on your living room TV.

Single apps not only give you convince in your day-to-day life but the comfort of your own home. 

Benefits of Single Apps: A Summary

Single App Table

Keep in mind that at the end of the day; it’s your project. Pick the interface that works best for you and your needs. Want more information on how to automate your home? Hive offers free consultations, where a designer comes to your home and discusses all exciting new features we can add.

Contact us by calling (813)575-HIVE or through our Contact Page to schedule an appointment. Make sure to check out our Youtube Channel for more smart home automation information and behind-the-scenes looks at amazing installations. 

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