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SnapPower brings USB to any outlet without re-wiring

SnapPower brings USB to any outlet without re-wiring

Around the world, around town — even around your home, finding an outlet is tough enough. It’s especially annoying when you need to charge your mobile devices, because then you need to port around a clumsy charger with you. There are outlets that have USB ports, but require a rewiring job many are uncomfortable with doing. For the masses, there’s SnapPower, an outlet cover that adds a USB port, but requires no wiring. All you have to do is slip the faceplate on in place of your existing one, and you have a USB outlet!

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August sources VC funds, promises fix for mystery ‘five foot’ problem

August sources VC funds, promises fix for mystery ‘five foot’ problem

In announcing their funding round, August dropped some interesting hints. The company that makes one of the better smart locks for your home, alongside their August Connect plug-in dongle, are already on the fast-track for connected home success. Still, they don’t seem content, and in sourcing $38 million in Series B funding, August said they were going to “define a new product category in the smart home, aiming to solve what we call the ‘last five foot problem.’”

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Jenn-Air smart oven to include smartphone control

Jenn-Air smart oven to include smartphone control

Jenn-Air has unveiled its new upcoming dual convection wall oven, a smart offering bid as the maker's first appliance with wireless connectivity and a related mobile app. According to Jenn-Air, its new oven brings with it some technology that's an industry first, giving consumers a never-before-available option when it comes to their stove. The smart oven won't be arriving until this upcoming September and there's no word on the pricing yet, but we do have a run down of all the features for you after the jump!

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Electrolux’s smart oven to include camera for monitoring food

Electrolux’s smart oven to include camera for monitoring food

Electrolux is planning to release a smart oven that'll bring the same sort of connectivity features we've seen on other appliances to your oven. Chief among them is a camera that'll make the food-monitoring process a remote job, and it'll be joined by a recipe app that is used to pull up instructions on how to cook whatever meal it is that you have planned. The plan itself isn't new -- we first heard about Electrolux's concept smart oven in the early fall of 2014. That concept is now set to become a reality, however, and it represents what looks to be a big push for more smart appliances on Electrolux's part.

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Scout Alarm DIY security system now ‘Works with Nest’

Scout Alarm DIY security system now ‘Works with Nest’

Scout, the do-it-yourself home alarm system that has standalone connectivity, is now working with Nest. In a blog post, Scout says their system now works with Nest “to enable seamless access and control of your Nest device(s) within your Scout account.” Your Scout Alarm will now work with Nest’s Smoke + Carbon Monoxide detector, as well as Nest Learning Thermostat. Though the reasoning for grouping your thermostat and home security system together might not be immediately clear, Scout has outlined several ways it can be handy.

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‘Nest Audio’ job listing suggests voice control could be the future

‘Nest Audio’ job listing suggests voice control could be the future

Nest wants to be the central hub of your home, which was made evident by their ‘Works with Nest’ platform, introduced last year. By allowing other IoT gadgets to link to Nest’s new platform, your home is tied together via the thermostat, of all things. Though third-party support will remain intact, it seems Nest is also extending their own reach into your home. A new job listing for ‘Nest Audio’ wants someone who can head the new team, though it’s not exactly clear why just yet.

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Marvell introduced SDK for IoT HomeKit devices

Marvell introduced SDK for IoT HomeKit devices

Your home will get smart, like it or not. Over time, smart devices for your home will outweigh dumb ones, and you’ll either have to jump on board with the ‘Internet of Things’, or live with the knowledge your home is possibly smarter than you are. Don’t believe us? Marvell, who make a variety of chipsets that go into smart home devices, has unveiled an SDK for the IoT, dubbed EZ-Connect. It’s the first SDK for Apple’s HomeKit, too, according to Marvell.

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Freiya smart watering can helps keep your plants alive

Freiya smart watering can helps keep your plants alive

Spring is nearing in many places, and that means it is time to start planting one's flowers and herbs. Not everyone has a green thumb, though, and planting is sometimes followed shortly after with a drooping or dead plant. Like all things, technology is swooping in to help address that issue, and thusly enters Freiya, a smart watering can that works in conjunction with one's smartphone to make sure you never forget to water (or end up over-watering) your plants.

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Neurio adds hard-wired brain to your connected home

Neurio adds hard-wired brain to your connected home

Your home and the ‘Internet of Things’ is an interesting concept, but there are so many devices out there aiming to help you do similar things. It’s maddening. Can one device rule them all? The answer to that is likely ‘no’, but one can potentially provide the backbone to make other devices useful. Starting today, you can pick up Neurio, a device meant to become the “brain of your home”, which will provide an open platform for others to build upon and link their devices.

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Scout gets IFTTT channel, runs away with DIY home security crown

Scout gets IFTTT channel, runs away with DIY home security crown

Home security doesn’t have to be expensive any more. In fact, you can get peace of mind for a few hundred bucks upfront, and never pay another dime. It’s one of the benefits of the ‘Internet of Things’ we keep hearing about. DIY home security is probably best realized with Scout, which lets you migrate between connected monitoring and home-grown security. Already one of the better options around, Scout just got a lot better with a new IFTTT channel.

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‘Terribly buggy’ Nest Protects can’t be hushed for one unlucky Googler

‘Terribly buggy’ Nest Protects can’t be hushed for one unlucky Googler

Any time a smoke alarm goes off, it’s troubling. Either your home is on fire, or the blackened tuna you’re searing caused a panic in your home. When cooking, getting your smoke alarm to silence quickly becomes priority one, but what if it just won’t shut up? Even worse — what if there was no smoke to begin with? Google’s Brad Fitzpatrick recently uploaded a video to YouTube, showing just what happens when your Nest Protect smoke alarm can’t get right, and just won’t shut up.

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August Connect and August Smart Lock review

August Connect and August Smart Lock review

Your connected home is only complete if it’s secure, and that starts at the front door. Though several cameras and motion sensors plan to tell you if something is going on, there’s no better first step for security than a locked door. There’s also nothing cooler than locking and unlocking your home from a phone, and the peace of mind you get from checking in on your front door from anywhere is comforting. Beautiful enough to reside in the Apple Store, we wanted to know if August was just a pretty face, or a home automation must-have.

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