smart home

Vivint Sky hands-on: The Smart Home starts learning

Vivint Sky hands-on: The Smart Home starts learning

Upstarts like Apple may be plowing into the smart home segment, but security and automation stalwart Vivint isn’t taking that lying down, launching a new system called Vivint Sky. Centered around a new, 7-inch color touchscreen and a cloud system of Vivint’s own creation, Vivint Sky promises not only centralized control in the home and remote smartphone apps, but learning algorithms that automatically pick up on the users’ own patterns.

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Here’s how Apple iOS 8 HomeKit works

Here’s how Apple iOS 8 HomeKit works

Apple has set its sights on the smart home, and HomeKit is how it plans to dominate it, promising a more cohesive automation experience by becoming the glue that holds everything together. HomeKit won’t launch officially until iOS 8 arrives on iPhones and iPads later this year, but developers and accessory manufacturers are already being let into the loop so they can get their software and hardware ready. Read on to find out exactly how it works.

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Qivicon hub to tackle smart home with Samsung backing

Qivicon hub to tackle smart home with Samsung backing

The smart home space is getting more competition, with Qivicon spreading its multi-provider home automation and security system to the US and UK. Already available in Germany, Qivicon is the handiwork of Deutsch Telekom (better known for being behind T-Mobile), Samsung, Miele, and others, connecting smart appliances, thermostats, garage doors, and other devices from over 30 companies to smartphone and tablet apps.

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Apple smart home tipped for WWDC

Apple smart home tipped for WWDC

Apple will turn the iPhone into a smart home hub at WWDC 2014 in early June, insiders claim, revealing a "big play" to make iOS the heart of home automation. One of the technologies announced at the annual Worldwide Developer Conference, which kicks off on June 2nd, will aim to make setting up and using a smart home system more straightforward, it's said, potentially using a new Apple TV as the core.

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Netatmo Rain Gauge lands with IFTTT support (and eBay too)

Netatmo Rain Gauge lands with IFTTT support (and eBay too)

Smart home weather hub firm Netatmo has released its Rain Gauge, a wireless way of tracking the wetter weather in your garden, arriving with IFTTT support out of the box, as the web-connection service also throws in a new eBay channel. The Netatmo Rain Gauge keeps count of both how many periods of rain you get, and how much accumulated rainfall there has been, firing the results to your Weather Station indoors.

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No, Nest isn’t making you yank Nest Protect from your ceiling

No, Nest isn’t making you yank Nest Protect from your ceiling

Nest's Protect smart smoke alarm is in the headlines again, after an official US recall notice prompted panic that owners would have to pull the flawed detector from their ceilings and return it. The warning follows Nest's mandatory software update back in April which disabled the wave-to-silence feature, after it was discovered that it could inadvertently stop the alarm from sounding in the case of a real emergency.

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