Automation Authority

Automation Authority was founded in 2006 by owners Johan Weideman and Juan van Staden.  Johan and Juan gained experience in the Home Automation industry, whilst working in London.

After living in London for five years they decided to bring their knowledge and skills back to South Africa.

In 2012, the business moved into the Dunkeld Bakos Brothers building and since then the partnership with Bakos Brothers has grown stronger.

Automation Authority currently has showrooms in Bakos Brothers Menlyn, Fourways (Design Quarter), Cape Town and soon to be Nelspruit.

The company’s mission for the future is to continue delivering world class service to clients both locally and internationally. Automation Authority’s clients include some of the most prestigious properties and business in Southern Africa, with numerous awards for Cinema design and automation systems. Their goal of a happy end-user remains constant no matter the client.

F.A.Q. and Answers

1. What equipment will I need in my home?

You don’t have to worry about specific equipment. Our trained technical/sales representative will visit your home or site to assess your needs and advise you on what system specifications will suit your home.

2. During which phase of the building project is the best time to contact us and get us involved?

Automation is a system installed into your home, either during the building stages, or retrofitted some time after the building has been completed. But it all depends on your situation as well as your needs.

In the case where you are building an new house or doing major renovations or upgrades,  it will be best if we get involved as soon your building plans have been approved by the council. This is to ensure the planning and placement of points and conduit pipes are all correct for the system you require.  The infrastructures layout and pipes are crucial for a smooth installation of phase 1.

A Phase 1 Infrastructure and planning: This happens at the beginning of your project. This phase includes the design of the infrastructure and the installation of structured wiring solution.

A Phase 2 Installation: This happens around the time when the ceilings are installed. This includes the wall and ceiling fittings. Examples are: Keypads, Wireless lighting switches, In-ceiling speakers, WAP’s (Wireless access points) and brackets. We ensure that the speaker arrangement  is correct in every room and that all connections are intact and functioning correctly.

A Phase 3 Final phase: This happens at the end of the project. We will install all the hardware and equipment at this stage. All the programming and setup will be completed and system will be tested and handed over.

The three phase program allows the project to be better managed and also ensures that you have a steady cash flow throughout. The program also make it possible for us supply you with the latest models and equipment in the 3rd phase. No building project goes exactly as planned and we know this. Therefore we are able to adapt according to your requirements and provide you with an end result you will be pleased with.

3. Can you provide us with a full solution for our cinema needs?

Indeed we can! Our Home Cinema installations offer a complete solution including cinema seating, home cinema designs and layout, acoustic panel design and consultation. We also do 3D design renderings, installation and programming as well as  the calibration of the audio-visual equipment to ensure the highest levels of performance and cutting edge cinema technology.  

4. Is it necessary for me to have a wi-fi network installed in my home?

Yes. Wifi in your home is necessary, because most of the home automation systems make use of Wifi. Smart TVs let you enjoy apps, surf the web and stream videos on the internet  from the comfort of your couch, but you will need a stable home Wifi network to do so. Some devices have an app that you can download to your tablet or smartphone which enables you to stream music straight to the device from anywhere in the house where there is a Wifi signal. You can also control your multi-room audio system from your smart device and choose what, when and where you listen to your music. We specialize in professional Wifi technology, to ensure fast and reliable internet connections.

5) How much is a home automation system?

This is one of the most frequently asked questions. A home automation system consists of many elements that make up the final smart home solution.

Home automation systems can start at R39 000 to R6 million and more! It all depends on the size of your home, the scope of the project, the subsystems you wish to connect and control as well as the quality, type and level of system you require. The bigger the system, the more time and equipment will be required to complete the project, but there is a comprehensive solution available for every type of house and budget.

6) What can I control with a smart home automation system?

  • Audio Visual components (Multi-room Distributed Audio and HD video, Home Theatre surround sound system and High Definition Video distribution)
  • Security CCTV Cameras
  • Lighting control
  • Motorised Curtains and Blinds
  • Climate control: HVAC (heating, ventilation & air conditioning)
  • Irrigation
  • Pool, Jacuzzi and Water features

7) Can I save energy using a home automation system?

If a smart home system is designed, configured and programmed effectively you can definitely save energy. The system can be programmed to turn lights on and off when a room is not in use or when you are away from home. You can bring down your energy usage considerably, by dimming lights and using motion sensors for occupancy control of a rooms’ lighting. By installing motorised curtains or blinds and light level sensors to control natural daylighting in a room, you can control the amount of natural light from the sun in a room which can further reduce energy usage.

8) Will my home technology become obsolete quickly? How do I ensure my system stays up-to-date?

We offer future-proofing of a home or building, which means integrating features that are locally sourced and designed in such a way to easily allow future upgrades and keeping replacements to a minimum with simplistic upgradeability. Our home technology professionals also stay current on emerging trends and products on the market. Their up-to-date knowledge, through continuous training, allows them to deliver technology that will not only merge seamlessly with your lifestyle but will also provide convenience, security, and entertainment for years to come.

9) What is home automation?

Automation is a system installed into your home, either during the building stages, or retrofitted some time after the building has been completed. A home automation system controls all your audio, video and lighting components from within your home or remotely. There is no limit to what home automation can do for you. It can be tailored to your specific needs. Home Automation makes living in your home more luxurious, convenient and efficient.

10) Does this work just when I’m in my house?

It will depend on your specific needs as well as  the amount of control you want over your home automation. If you only want to control audio, video and lighting throughout the home while you are physically in it, a closed home automation system with a controller specific to that system will be sufficient.

But if you want to access your home automation system remotely from your office or holiday destination, you’ll need a system that can be accessed using a Web browser and home control APP or even your smartphone, which can definitely be done.

11) What can be achieved with a home control system?

The possibilities are virtually endless/limitless

Below are some examples of the main systems you may wish to control:

Lighting Control  – Lights can be automated into specific moods and scenes or be set into a sequence that will switch on and off in a certain, pre-programmed sequence.

Multi-room audio and video distribution – Enjoy sound and vision from different sources to different zones in your home without compromising on quality.

High Definition (HDTV) distributed to all your TV’s around the homeEnjoy your high definition content throughout the house either from your centralised media server, choose from a library of movies and videos or stream pictures, YouTube videos, movies, and more from your Apple or Android devices.

CCTV – This is very useful for safety conscious individuals.  Feel secure in your home, and monitor it remotely when you are at the office, out on the town or on holiday.  

Climate control – Keep cool in the summer and warm in the winter with a Wifi controlled air conditioning system.

Wifi coverage – Use smartphones, tablets, PC’s and other Wifi enabled devices wirelessly around your home.

Blinds and curtains – Motorised curtains and blinds add convenience and style to any living space and are perfect for home theatres. Set them with a touch of a button, or smart programming which will allow automatic adjustments according to time of day, season and sun position. This is also an effective way to save electricity.

Touch screen controls – Total home control at your fingertips with fitted touch screen keypads or portable keypads and remotes.

Surge protection – With surge protection products, your electronics are fed pristine AC power. You will not only see and hear your theatre or audio system as it should be – uncompromised, but they will also be protecting against power surges, lighting strikes, over and under voltage and cable theft.

12) What is home lighting control system and what does it control?

With automated lighting, you can personalize a light control system to recall favourite settings and effortlessly transform the light that surrounds you in a single room or throughout the entire home using a hand-held remote, wall-mounted keypad, tabletop control, and now, your iPad or iPhone or Android devices.

Smart lighting adds elegance, ambiance, convenience, and energy efficiency to your home. Automate your lighting to respond to your schedule without any touch at all. Whether for daylight and energy savings, or to accentuate art and architecture with the lighting control system – you can dim your lights between 1 – 99% smoothly.

13) What are the security advantages of a home lighting control system?

Lighting control enables your entire home, garden and driveway to light up with a single press of a button. Have a soft path of light appear automatically between the bedroom and the bathroom in the middle of the night or a glow on the treads of the stairs for a safer descent. Your lighting control system can be linked to motion detectors enabling your lights to flash on and off as a deterrent when activated or simply light to full for your peace of mind. Lighting control can also be linked to many other devices such as fire and burglar alarms and CCTV.

14) Can home lighting control integrate with other devices?

Yes. Your home lighting control system can be seamlessly integrated with many other home automation devices such as home cinema, audio systems, blind and curtain control, alarm systems and air conditioning.

15) What is multi-room audio and video?

Fill your entire house with music or stream it to just one room or selected areas of the house. With multi-room audio an video  you can enjoy high definition audio and video content, playing different tunes/radio stations or movies in different rooms throughout your home from one centralised system.

16) How is multi-room audio and video controlled?

By using a remote control or a keypad on the wall the source and volume can be altered and the system can be switched on or off. With the push of one or two buttons multiroom audio enables you to select your choice of music instantly from anywhere in your home. LCD touch screens and Apple iPads or Android tablets can also be used to provide graphical controls.

17) What do multi-room audio and video systems look like?

Multi-room audio and video systems can be discreetly concealed or tastefully presented in your central audio and video area. Your home control keypads located throughout your home serve as convenient control stations which forward requests for volume, radio station, music track, etc., to the central control system. Control is also possible using dedicated touchscreens on smartphone/tablet devices using Apps.

18) Can I control my house with an iPad?

Most certainly! Our home automation control systems allow you to use Apple or Android Smart devices to remotely control your home.

19) In wall and wireless control options?

In wall touch screens are not only elegant but have the added benefit that the system is hard wired and should there be an issue with Wi-Fi you still have control over the system.

Wireless options include very stylish iPad and Android device wall mounting options, a selection of in wall options are available as is an on wall option. Some on wall options are magnetic and will even charge the device via an induction charger, so you can still use the tablet on the go!

20) What is home automation integration?

Any or all of the features  above can be installed in your home and integrated so that you have a single easy to use touch screen pad in each room or portable remotes.. This allows you to alter any aspect of the environment and entertainment throughout your entire home. Integration using a reliable wired and wireless infrastructure forms the “backbone” of your home; and allows all of these devices to connect and communicate with each other. The result is an intelligent and personalized experience that enhances your life or added comfort, savings, convenience and peace of mind.

Let us demonstrate how we can meet your requirements.