smart home

Nest Protect 2nd-gen adds Split-Sensor and silencing

Nest Protect 2nd-gen adds Split-Sensor and silencing

Nest Protect has been updated, with a smaller, more effective second-generation version promising more convenience and safety features. The revamped smoke and carbon monoxide alarm now uses a brand new twin-sensor system which Nest claims is both even faster at detection than before, as well as less likely to go off accidentally such as when you're burning the toast.

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Nest Cam adds 1080p and new stand to Dropcam

Nest Cam adds 1080p and new stand to Dropcam

Nest has revealed its latest product, Nest Cam, a streaming security camera. First fruit of the company's Dropcam acquisition back in June 2014, the new camera bears a distinct resemblance to models like the Dropcam Pro, with a rounded top section atop a newly-slimmed stand that also offers wall-mounting. Inside, there's 1080p video support along with both WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity.

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Nest updates to protect from smoke and temp extremes

Nest updates to protect from smoke and temp extremes

Nest is pushing out a new software update for its smart learning thermostat, further integrating it with the Nest Protect for handling fires. The new firmware, which is being released today, will automatically control the HVAC system to avoid pushing smoke around the home. Meanwhile, it will also include the ability to warn users if their home is reaching dangerously high, or low, temperatures.

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LG Smart Lighting joins the Apple HomeKit party to battle Hue

LG Smart Lighting joins the Apple HomeKit party to battle Hue

In the very near future, LG will release a number of smart lights and a hub which will be compatible with Apple HomeKit. This LG Smart Lighting solution is not LG's first - they also released a Bluetooth-friendly bulb called LG SmartLamp, allowing you to connect - one at a time - to each bulb within range. This new line of bulbs will all connect to a single device called a Scene Gateway, a hub that requires only power and a connection to your internet router.

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How HomeKit embraces Siri, Apple Watch and iCloud

How HomeKit embraces Siri, Apple Watch and iCloud

Apple is bolstering HomeKit, bringing more smart home kit under the automation umbrella and adding Apple Watch, Siri, and iCloud integration to boost usability both when at home and away. The new functionality, based on iOS 9, will see HomeKit potentially take on a more serious role thanks to integration with security systems, while improvements to the setup process should make home automation installation less of a headache. However, there’s good news for those with existing gadgets they don’t want to replace.

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Nest Cam leaked, Nest’s prettier Dropcam replacement

Nest Cam leaked, Nest’s prettier Dropcam replacement

Nest is expected to announce a new product next week, but it won't be a home monitor, at least not in the sense that the Thermostat and the Protect are. It is believed to be a camera and, based on the leaked photos grabbed by Droid Life, that is exactly what it is. Called simply the Nest Cam, it is pretty much Nest's stand in for Dropcam, which is now owns. Luckily, it seems that it didn't settle for a simple rebranding, giving the upcoming smart camera a sleeker design.

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Apple’s plugging HomeKit’s biggest shortcoming

Apple’s plugging HomeKit’s biggest shortcoming

Apple’s HomeKit in 2014 was a promising start but lacked depth; it’s only with the arrival of iOS 9 that the smart home platform will begin to seem truly useful rather than a gimmick. What will arguably make the biggest difference to actual users is the new support for Event Triggers and Conditions. That will allow for conditional macros: strings of not only actions, like lights turning on and doors unlocking, but the rules and exceptions that govern them.

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Apple HomeKit’s newest Hue addition is retrofit

Apple HomeKit’s newest Hue addition is retrofit

The Philips Hue ecosystem will be fit with Apple HomeKit capabilities this Autumn, including both systems old and new. Philips Hue has suggested that they "will help existing users to upgrade their system" and will be updating "all existing Hue light sources" to be "made compatible with HomeKit." If that's not good news for those Hue users looking to work with HomeKit in the future, I don't know what is. Come this September, this system will be sent up in full detail. For now, Philips is preparing their system for full compatibility.

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Philips Hue Dimmer Switch and brighter bulb incoming

Philips Hue Dimmer Switch and brighter bulb incoming

Philips has a new remote control for its hue wireless lights in the pipeline, along with a brighter version of its color-changing bulb. The new products, revealed during regulatory testing at the FCC, include an update on the original hue bulb with an 800 lumen version. However, it's the new Hue Dimmer Switch which is arguably more interesting, given how it potentially addresses a common complaint among those with the remote-controlled bulbs installed in their homes.

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