D-Link has waded into the smart plug market, taking on the DIY smart home with the new WiFi Smart Plug DSP-W215, which not only allows for remote control of a plugged in appliance, but monitoring of its power consumption. The adapter - along with its companion apps for iOS and Android - slots in-between a regular AC outlet and your appliance of choice, whether that be an air-conditioning unit, lamp, or a TV, and can even watch out for potential overheating.
Part of the connected home initiative many are attempting to tackle is home security. NETGEAR and iControl have teamed up to make security a focus with thier new STS7000 unit. The touchscreen display will give you ful control over your home security, but can also be a hub for all things in your connected home.
Wireless security camera Dropcam has scored SmartThings integration, feeding live photos to the smart home app, as well as triggering home automation devices when movement is detected. Part of SmartThings' Labs open beta, Dropcam cameras can be used both as triggers or outputs in a DIY smart home setup, including automatically capturing a cluster of photos when someone opens the front door.
Nest's smart learning thermostat has been added to the virtual shelves of Google's Play store, coinciding with Earth Day as Google stresses the eco-friendly credentials of the smart home tech. Signs that Google would be offering Nest direct emerged yesterday, when a product listing for the thermostat in Play was briefly published and then yanked again.
Nest expects selling thermostat usage data to energy providers to eventually bring in more cash for the smart home brand than the hardware itself, though chief exec Tony Fadell still insists that he's holding true to his promises about privacy. The CEO made a commitment to withholding user data from Google after the search giant acquired Nest earlier this year, amid early adopter fears that metrics like when they were home or away might be handed over to Nest's new owners.
Security webcam and home automation hub Piper has been updated with camera swarm support, allowing multiple units to set up several zones of surveillance, as well as enabling two-way audio. The update comes on the heels of Piper's acquisition by home security heavyweight iControl, with up to five of the cameras now supported in any one home, and all sharing data.
Crowdfunding success and smart home startup Piper is likely headed to more homes after being acquired by security and home automation firm iControl, which aims to target the tech at renters and other installation-shy users. Piper, launched on Indiegogo last year, is a combination security webcam and home automation hub, allowing remote access of streaming video as well as the ability to control appliances and lights through plug-in wireless modules.
When you have a product like Kinect, so closely associated with gaming, how do you convince everybody else that they should be installing a motion-tracking camera in the home? Microsoft is looking to smart home technology and health, among other things, to do just that with Kinect for Windows v2, though a stealthy spread through Cortana and smartphones may be just as vital. We caught up with Microsoft’s Michael Mott, general manager of Xbox applications and developer relations, to find out how virtual assistants and home automation could make Kinect-tech the next must-have.