Home Automation

Google Assistant is turning smart homes into smart schools

Google Assistant is turning smart homes into smart schools

The first months of the year saw workers and offices thrown into chaos trying to adjust to new work from home and remote work arrangements. Now it's almost time for schools to experience that same transition, hopefully a little less jarring thanks to months of preparation and planning. Systems and products are now in place that can help bring order to what would otherwise be chaos as kids start schooling from home and Google Assistant is right there at your beck and call, quite literally, too!

Continue Reading

WORX Landroid M robotic mower Review : Automatic electronic yard care

WORX Landroid M robotic mower Review : Automatic electronic yard care

This summer I've been testing several lawn mowers, the most unique of which is this robot from WORX. This is the WORX Landroid M robotic mower, a fully automated, cordless, rechargeable battery powered piece of equipment that'll do all your work for you. The biggest obstacle you'll face is setup, and that's pretty straightforward if you follow the directions step-by-step.

Continue Reading

Google Assistant Smart Displays can now play audiovisual games

Google Assistant Smart Displays can now play audiovisual games

They may look like tablets but they are definitely not as versatile as tablets. Smart displays, that breed of devices that slap a screen on a smart speaker, are mostly designed for giving visual feedback to otherwise spoken responses from a digital assistant, though some can indeed play videos or even be used for video calls. There's definitely a lot of room for expanding its capabilities while still sticking to its core philosophy. It turns out, that core philosophy is perfect for some games you can play with the family in the living room.

Continue Reading

Hunter Douglas’ power blinds add a rechargeable battery option

Hunter Douglas’ power blinds add a rechargeable battery option

Hunter Douglas is adding a rechargeable battery option to its PowerView motorized blinds, promising to be greener and easier to maintain than the current system. Supporting retrofitting into "most" existing PowerView shades from the company, the Rechargeable Battery Wand is a slim stick of li-ion battery that clips in behind the blinds' headrail.

Continue Reading

Hunter Douglas PowerView+ and PowerView AC promise sleeker smart shades

Hunter Douglas PowerView+ and PowerView AC promise sleeker smart shades

Motorized smart blinds are increasingly a must-have, particularly in renovations, which is just where Hunter Douglas' latest PowerView models aim to discreetly slot in. The PowerView+ and PowerView AC promise to be quieter and more flexible than existing powered shades, and without the need to change batteries or periodically plug them in to charge.

Continue Reading

Google Nest teases something special on Monday

Google Nest teases something special on Monday

Home-centric devices have become more relevant and more useful these days, with everyone stuck at home most of the time. From laptops to mobile devices to smart speakers and smart displays, smart devices at home have experienced a surge in demand that some may have even had difficulty supplying. Google might be trying to take advantage of that rise in popularity and has promised something special coming from its Nest smart home brand, maybe even a new Nest Home speaker with a rather unique design.

Continue Reading

Google teases next Nest smart speaker’s odd design

Google teases next Nest smart speaker’s odd design

First, they were rectangular boxes. Then they became canisters or pucks. Over the years, wireless speakers have changed their form and now Google seems to be considering yet another revolution in speaker design. Practically confirming an earlier leak, Google has apparently been sending out more or less official marketing material for what may be the successor of the Google Home sporting what can probably be best described as a pillow design.

Continue Reading

Google Store now lets you choose Nest 3rd-party installation services

Google Store now lets you choose Nest 3rd-party installation services

The excitement over the prospect of upgrading your home into a smart home can easily be doused by the thought of having to install those IoT devices yourself. Sure, you can get away with some smart bulbs and smart plugs but the real magic happens when you add smart thermostats, smart security cameras, and smart locks to your house. If electrical jobs are not your forte, Google is now offering the help of third-party pro services to do that for you. Presuming, of course, you're going all-in on the Nest platform.

Continue Reading

Guardzilla shuts down without telling security camera owners

Guardzilla shuts down without telling security camera owners

The Internet of Things market, from smart homes to smart cars, promises a lot of conveniences but, like everything, also comes with hidden costs. For this segment of products, that cost is a reliance on the Internet or at least some form of connectivity. While some devices can continue working even after remote servers go dark, others are so intricately tied to the cloud that they immediately stop working once that plug is pulled, like the dozens of Guardzilla security cameras that have now become totally worthless without any warning.

Continue Reading

Amazon Dash Wand to become a useless stick next month

Amazon Dash Wand to become a useless stick next month

It seems that this is the year for sunsetting products that no longer make sense in today's world or, more importantly, don't make the company any money. One of Amazon's oddest products, right next to its fashion-sensing Echo Look, fits the bill on both accounts. Part barcode scanner and part Alexa microphone, the Amazon Dash Wand was envisioned to revolutionize the way you order supplies, especially in the kitchen. Starting July, however, it will practically become some pointless device that might not even be useful as a paperweight.

Continue Reading

Philips Hue Bridge v1 will stop working with Google Assistant tomorrow

Philips Hue Bridge v1 will stop working with Google Assistant tomorrow

The appeal of smart homes and smart appliances isn't just the fact that they connect to the Internet. It's the fact that they connect to Internet-based services and features, like remote control from phones or voice commands makes them the ultimate modern convenience. Unfortunately for owners of Philips' first-generation Hue Bridge, that convenience is finally coming to a close with Google pulling the plug out of its Assistant integration on Monday.

Continue Reading

Roborock S6 MaxV Review: smart vacuuming and mopping for a price

Roborock S6 MaxV Review: smart vacuuming and mopping for a price

We've come a long way since the very first Roomba rolled on living room and kitchen floors. While still sticking to that same circular design, robot vacuum cleaners have changed and evolved considerably over the years, gaining features like obstacle avoidance, simultaneous mopping, or voice control. Roborock's latest S6 MaxV cleaning helper has all those and more, making it one of the smartest robots to grace your floor and certainly one of the more expensive ones as well.

Continue Reading

1 2 3 4 Next