Re: Control devices through an app
>I don't mind in principle controlling things from my phone, it's just too much of a bother to have to unlock the phone every time I want to turn a light on.
1. Buy a el cheapo phone or tablet to the job, or re-purpose one from your junk drawer.
2. Many phones have an option to not require unlocking if they are within range of a known Bluetooth device (yes, this is potentially a security hole).
I'd say option 1 is probably the better one. A dedicated tablet for lights, music, checking EPG for the television, sending video to the TV... indeed, according to surveys reported on by the Reg, many tablet don't leave the house. It wouldn't have to be a fast tablet with a fancy screen, either.
Heck, my daily-use 4G quad-core phone only cost £45 brand-new... in a couple of years the cost of a dedicated handset is going to be negligible.
Option 3. Buy a Raspberry Pi, some plywood and assorted knobs and dials, get your soldering iron out, and make a control console to rival a 1950s sci-fi set, Mwaahhhahahaha!