smart home

SmartThings Review: Living in the Smart Home

SmartThings Review: Living in the Smart Home

Prepare to hear a lot more about SmartThings. Kickstarter success turned Samsung acquisition, the smart home startup isn't the only DIY approach to home automation and security out there, but it may well end up being one of the best funded. SmartThings' mantra is one of openness, aiming to work with as many third-party components as possible rather than lock users into a closed platform. Admirable, but it could easily add up to confusion; I've been living the SmartThings life for the past six months to see whether it works.

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Samsung buys SmartThings in preemptive HomeKit strike

Samsung buys SmartThings in preemptive HomeKit strike

Home automation start-up SmartThings has been snapped up by Samsung, with the South Korean firm grabbing the modular smart home specialist. The deal will see SmartThings - which offers a wireless home hub that connects to various sensors, remote sockets, light bulbs, and other components - operate as an independent company as part of Samsung's Open Innovation Center group, though it's still likely to prompt some concerns from avid fans of the firm.

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Peq smart home aims to take on SmartThings

Peq smart home aims to take on SmartThings

Another day, another smart home system, with Peq believed to be Best Buy's attempt to jump on the home automation bandwagon. Peq - pronounced "peek" - follows in the footsteps of similar systems like SmartThings, Revolv, and Staples Connect, with a central hub that wirelessly connects to various cameras, door and window sensors, thermostats, and more.

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Ninja Sphere centralizes your whole Smart Home

Ninja Sphere centralizes your whole Smart Home

With the Ninja Sphere and a wireless internet connection in your home, you’ll be well on your way to connecting every electronic device you own to a smart interface. Ninja Sphere comes from the same folks that’ve created the Ninja Block, a very similar piece of hardware that runs the same code but does not work with a display, gestures, or radio connectivity. The Ninja Sphere upgrades the whole works.

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Philips Hue Tap Review: Smart bulbs go old-school

Philips Hue Tap Review: Smart bulbs go old-school

Philips’ hue smart lightbulbs have always been at the mercy of a dumb switch. The range of color-changing LED bulbs have won over many smart home enthusiasts with their flexible effects and easy installation, but while controlling lighting from a smartphone or tablet is catnip to geeks, the less tech-savvy were left bemoaning their suddenly redundant physical light switches. Enter Hue Tap, a tactile and portable way to bring up to four presets out of the app and into the real world.

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Revolv smart home hub adds Nest support and Android app

Revolv smart home hub adds Nest support and Android app

Home automation hub Revolv has released its Android app, bringing Google's platform into the fold alongside iOS, as well as integrating support for the Nest Smart Thermostat. The smart home box - which brings together various home automation platforms like Philips' hue and Sonos speakers - also gets a new UI for its iOS app, though it's the "Works with Nest" support that most will be excited about.

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Lenovo C1 Google Glass rival launches NBD Internet of Things push

Lenovo C1 Google Glass rival launches NBD Internet of Things push

Lenovo has revealed a new wearable prototype, the Lenovo C1, a Google Glass aping set of smart glasses to help launch its NBD platform for the smart home and Internet of Things. Announced in China today, the NBC - or "New Bench" - platform aims to make connected devices like web-enabled air purifiers more inter-compatible, by providing a framework, manufacturing support, R&D, and even funding to third-party firms.

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Blink HD home monitor promises total absence of wires

Blink HD home monitor promises total absence of wires

CCTV's and security cameras are no longer the purview of stores, offices, or business establishments. But while WiFi-connected home monitoring systems are becoming more popular in this age of the Internet of Things, most, if not all, of them still require one form of wire or another. Not so with Blink, an upcoming HD home monitoring and alert system that removes the need for any sort of wire, even to keep the monitor powered up.

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