Wireless

Bluetooth 4.1 takes on Internet of Things with flexibility boost

Bluetooth 4.1 takes on Internet of Things with flexibility boost

Bluetooth is making a play for being the wireless glue that holds the future smart home together, with the Bluetooth 4.1 Core Specification adding key technologies to support the Internet of Things (IoT). Aiming to make Bluetooth 4.1 more flexible in how devices like wearables, web-enabled appliances, smartphones, and other gadgets reconnect when they move in and out of range, not to mention making data transfer more efficient, the new standard builds on Bluetooth Smart, the low-power version that has proliferated in recent years thanks in no small part to inclusion in the iPhone and iPad.

Continue Reading

Qualcomm Toq smartwatch first-impressions

Qualcomm Toq smartwatch first-impressions

This week we're getting another look at the Qualcomm Toq smartwatch, a device that was revealed by the processor manufacturer earlier this year. This device was revealed on the same day the Samsung Galaxy Gear was shown off, the Samsung device aimed at consumers, the Qualcomm device directed at a crowd that's made up of more early adopters and developers. Here we've got a device that's essentially the polar opposite of the Pebble smartwatch as well - made to be elite, not for the everyman, and sporting the best of the best in display technology, according to Qualcomm.

Continue Reading

RUNSAFER smart shoes to track running health wirelessly

RUNSAFER smart shoes to track running health wirelessly

A new smart running shoe capable of evaluating biomechanical data like form, foot position, and even exhaustion in real-time could supercharge what we expect from wearable fitness monitors when it goes on sale in early 2015. Dubbed EU Project RUNSAFER, the sensor-studded shoe is expected to launch under the Kelme brand in Europe, and is part of a project led by Fraunhofer Institute researchers to go beyond pulse- and breathing-rate, pace, and other typical biometrics currently collected by health wearables.

Continue Reading

Staples Connect launches to tame the smart home

Staples Connect launches to tame the smart home

Staples has launched its smart home platform, Staples Connect, bundling third-party sensors, lights, wireless sockets and locks, and more, with a universal control hub that links them together. The $99 Staples Connect hub - which works with Honeywell, Philips hue, Lutron, Yale, GE, First Alert, and other brands of home automation kit - will be sold alone as well as in themed kits, such as for those wanting to take remote control over lighting or security monitoring, with a single iOS and Android app to manage them.

Continue Reading

Lumen Bluetooth 4.0 LED bulb takes on Philips hue

Lumen Bluetooth 4.0 LED bulb takes on Philips hue

Color-changing LED lighting is probably the most obvious way of introducing some smart home tech, and though Philips' hue is the best known system, that hasn't stopped startup rivals from trying to take its crown. Lumen turned to crowdfunding to get its TL800 Bluetooth 4.0 bulb off the ground, and now it's headed to store shelves, promising direct control from your iPhone or (select) Android handset.

Continue Reading

Belkin WeMo Insight Switch arrives for power-tracking home automation

Belkin WeMo Insight Switch arrives for power-tracking home automation

Belkin's WeMo Insight power-tracking wireless power socket has finally launched, offering internet-of-things and home automation fans a way not only to remotely control appliances, but see how much electricity they're sucking down. The switch, revealed back in September, works with Belkin's existing WeMo line-up of motion-sensors and remote plugs, with control from an iOS or Android device whether inside the home or outside it.

Continue Reading