Developing Smart Home Applications


This paper utilizes an IoT platform called IoTtalk to shape “intelligence” into a house to make it a smart home. The developed project is called HomeTalk that serves as a platform to accommodate various smart applications in a house. We describe the following HomeTalk applications. The PlantTalk application takes care of house plants. The FishTalk application provides fish comfortable life in the fish tank at home. The BreathTalk application detects the number of people in a room, which also purifies the air. The TheaterTalk application uses home and special appliances to create the effects for a 4D experience theater at home. The FrameTalk application allows a painting frame to interact with people in a house. The GardenTalk application provides smart gardening. By examining these projects, this paper explicitly identifies and generalizes the features of HomeTalk that provides flexibility to reuse these IoT devices by sharing them among various smart home applications simultaneously. Specifically, we show how these applications share the sensors and actuators in the house. In the future, we will integrate them through an award winning project called Orchid House.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.

Fig. 1
Fig. 2
Fig. 3
Fig. 4
Fig. 5
Fig. 6
Fig. 7
Fig. 8
Fig. 9
Fig. 10
Fig. 11
Fig. 12
Fig. 13
Fig. 14
Fig. 15
Fig. 16
Fig. 17.
Fig. 18.


  1. 1.

    Lin Y-B, Lin Y-W, Huang C-M, Chih C-Y, Lin P (2017) IoTtalk: a management platform for reconfigurable sensor devices. IEEE Internet Things J 4(5):1152–1562

    Google Scholar 

  2. 2.

    Pătru I-I, Carabaş M, Bărbulescu M, Gheorghe L (2016) smart home IoT system", 15th RoEduNet conference: networking in education and research

  3. 3.

    Suresh S, Sruthi PV (2015) A review on smart home technology, 2015 online international conference on green engineering and technologies (IC-GET)

  4. 4.

    Malche T, Maheshwary P (2017) Internet of things (IoT) for building smart home system, international conference on I-SMAC (IoT in social, Mobile, analytics and cloud) (I-SMAC)

  5. 5.

    Frugal Labs Tech Solutions Pvt Ltd, 2019. [online]

  6. 6.

    Arduino Nano 2019. [online]

  7. 7.

    Lin Y-W, Lin Y-B, Yang M-T, Lin J-H (2019) ArduTalk: an Arduino network application development platform based on IoTtalk. IEEE System J 13(1):468–476

    Article  Google Scholar 

  8. 8.

    Erfani S, Ahmadi M, Chen L (2017) The internet of things for smart homes: an example, 8th annual industrial Automation and electromechanical engineering conference (IEMECON)

  9. 9.

    Chen L, Erfani S (2017) A note on security management of the internet of things. Proc. IEEE 30th Canadian Conf. Elec. and Comp. Eng. (CCECE 2017), Windsor, pp 933–936

    Google Scholar 

  10. 10.

    Van LD, Lin Y-B, Wu T-H, Lin YW, Peng S-R, Kao L-H, Chang C-H PlantTalk: A smartphone-based intelligent hydroponic plant box, Accepted and to appear in Sensors Journal

  11. 11.

    Lin Y-B, Tseng H-C (2019) FishTalk: an IoT-based mini aquarium system. IEEE Access 7(1):35457–35469

    Article  Google Scholar 

  12. 12.

    DOE (2011) Building Energy Databook. Technical report, US Department of Energy

  13. 13.

    Lin Y-W, Lin Y-B, Liu C-Y (2019) AItalk: a tutorial to implement AI as IoT devices. IET Networks 8(3):195–202

    Article  Google Scholar 

  14. 14.

    Lin Y-B, Yang M-T, Lin Y-W (2019) Low-cost four-dimensional experience theater using home appliances. IEEE Trans Multimed 21(5):1161–1168

    Article  Google Scholar 

  15. 15.

    Lai W-S, Lin Y-B, Hsiao C-Y, Chen L-K, Wu C-F, Lin S-M FrameTalk: human and picture frame interaction through the IoT technology", Accepted and to appear in Mobile Networks and Applications Journal

  16. 16.

    Chen W-L, Lin Y-B, Lin Y-W, Chen R, Liao J-K, Ng F-L, Chan Y-Y, Liu Y-C, Wang C-C, Chiu C-H, Yen T-H (2019) AgriTalk: IoT for precision soil farming of turmeric cultivation. IEEE Internet Things J.

  17. 17.

    Taiwan Today (2014) [online]

  18. 18.

    Milner R (2009) The space and motion of communicating agents. Cambridge University Press

  19. 19.

    Bhattacharyya R, Das A, Majumdar A, Ghosh P (2019) Real-Time Scheduling Approach for IoT-Based Home Automation System, Data Management, Analytics and Innovation, pp 103–113, Spe

  20. 20.

    Home Automation, Wikipedia, 2020. [Online]

Download references


The authors would like to thank Prof. Yi-Bing Lin for guidance and steers in this work, and also for his helpful comments on this paper.


This work was supported in part by the Center for Open Intelligent Connectivity from The Featured Areas Research Center Program within the framework of the Higher Education Sprout Project by the Ministry of Education in Taiwan, and Ministry of Science and Technology 108–2221-E-009-047, Ministry of Economic Affairs 107-EC-17-A-02-S5–007.

Author information



Corresponding author

Correspondence to Yun-Wei Lin.

Additional information

Publisher’s note

Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.

Appendix. Scalability, Replicability, Interoperability, and Extensibility

Appendix. Scalability, Replicability, Interoperability, and Extensibility

To support scalability, replicability of the system, interoperability, and extensibility, IoTtalk is designed to be easily adopted (accommodated) by other IoT platforms and become a part of these platforms. Two ways to integrate IoTtalk with other platforms were described in [7]. For the reader’s benefit, the description in [7] is quoted and reiterated in this appendix.

In the first alternative, IoTtalk is ported on top of the target platforms such as AllJoyn and oneM2M (Fig. 19). It works because AllJoyn and oneM2M provide APIs to allow the user to build network applications. Therefore, when we port IoTtalk on top of, for example, oneM2M, it is considered as a network application of oneM2M. The porting uses oneM2M API (API1 in Fig. 19) to implement four functions: connect, disconnect, push and pull. Then all physical oneM2M devices become IoTtalk devices and can interact with the control (Arduino) boards through the IoTtalk (HomeTalk) GUI. In Fig. 19, the IoTtalk server is ported on both oneM2M (API1) and AllJoyn (API2).


Fig. 19.

Integrating IoTtalk with other platforms

Actually, the first version of the IoTtalk Engine was successfully built on top of an early version of oneM2M called openMTC. In Fig. 19, through the IoTtalk server, the sensor of Arduino Board can control the light bulb of oneM2M, and the smart watch of oneM2M can control water spray of AllJoyn or the fan connected to the Arduino board. Therefore, an oneM2M user may implement his/her IoT device following the oneM2M protocols and still can enable the device to interact with the IoTtalk devices.

In the second alternative, the IoTtalk GUI creates an icon for a platform to be integrated with IoTtalk. For example, IoTtalk has successfully connected to Chunghwa Telecom’s commercial IoT Gateway using this approach (Fig. 20). Both the IoTtalk server and the CHT IoT Gateway are installed in a Raspberry Pi 3. We have created an IoTtalk device called CHT-GW. The device application (DAI) connects to the CHT IoT Gateway through a web socket. In this alternative, CHT provides a command table to CHT-GW. For example, “1” represents a fan, and then under this command, the subcommand 0 represents “turn off” and so on. With this integration, the temperature sensor of the control board can interact with CHT’s home appliances through the command table. Same approach is used to integrate two independent IoTtalk platforms, i.e., the CHT IoT Gateway is replaced by another IoTtalk server in Fig. 20, which is located in a different server. In this way, multiple IoTtalk platforms are loosely coupled to achieve scalability, replicability of the system, interoperability, and extensibility.

Note that in both alternatives, IoTtalk does not modify other IoT platforms. Such integration only requires minimal porting efforts and IoTtalk does not need to know the low level details of other IoT platforms.

Fig 20.

Integrating IoTtalk with CHT IoT Gateway

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Lin, Y., Tseng, S., Liao, J. et al. Developing Smart Home Applications. Mobile Netw Appl (2020).

Download citation


  • IoT
  • Smart home applications
  • Sensor integration