We've covered SparkFun electronics before on SlashGear, but with the new IOIO for Android the company has really excelled itself. A USB-connected I/O breakout interfact board for Android smartphones and tablets, it basically turns your phone into an Arduino-style electronics hub, linking external sensors, inputs and controls to your custom apps via a simple Java API.
So, you could hook up the IOIO for Android and a couple of heat sensors, and whip up an app that measures room temperature and then emails you if it's getting too hot. Thanks to a range of I/O choices - including Digital Input/Output, PWM, Analog Input, I2C, SPI and UART control - you could also connect your home thermostat to automatically adjust the heating in response.
Basically, your programming abilities are the limit, and as we've seen with Android developers there's no shortage of clever ideas out there. SparkFun have tested the IOIO for Android with the Nexus S and Nexus One, T-Mobile G1 and Motorola DROID X, as well as an unspecified tablet, but it should play nicely with anything running OS 1.5 or above. It's available for pre-order now, priced at $49.95.
[via Android Community]