Internet of Things

Cortana doesn’t need smart speakers to win insists Microsoft exec

Cortana doesn’t need smart speakers to win insists Microsoft exec

Microsoft isn't letting underwhelming interest in Cortana smart speakers sour it on the assistant technology, even if Amazon Echo and Google Home still get the lion's share of sales - and attention - in the connected home. The software giant still resists calls to develop its own smart speaker, instead relying on third-party hardware like the Harman Kardon Invoke to fill that niche.

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Alexa gets professional newscaster voice for reading news briefs

Alexa gets professional newscaster voice for reading news briefs

Back in November, word surfaced that Amazon was working on a proper newscaster voice for Alexa, which it would be used when reading the news. Unlike the assistant's regular voice, the newscaster voice features the same intonation and emphasis used by professionals when delivering the news. As of today, Alexa users in the US can now access that newscaster voice.

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Leak claims Ring staff had ‘unfettered’ access to unencrypted videos

Leak claims Ring staff had ‘unfettered’ access to unencrypted videos

A new leak alleges major security concerns revolving around Amazon Ring, a line of security camera products designed for inside and outside of one's home. Amazon acquired Ring in 2018 for $1 billion, expanding its hardware portfolio while offering consumers a way to increase their home security. A new report claims poor privacy practices at Ring have left its customers vulnerable, however.

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New Echo Dot deal gets the latest Alexa speaker for under $30

New Echo Dot deal gets the latest Alexa speaker for under $30

CES 2019 may not have been short on smart home tech, but a deal of the day promotion on the latest Echo Dot 3rd Gen could put Alexa in your house a whole lot sooner. The third-generation smart speaker got an audio and aesthetic update late last year, making Amazon's assistant both look and sound better than before.

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Whirlpool Smart Countertop Oven can identify the food it cooks

Whirlpool Smart Countertop Oven can identify the food it cooks

Whirlpool's incubator WLabs has developed a new countertop oven capable of recognizing the food placed within it. Called the Smart Countertop Oven, this limited edition appliance automatically sets the appropriate time and temperature for whatever food the user has placed within the appliance.

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Lenovo Smart Clock brings Google Assistant to your bedside

Lenovo Smart Clock brings Google Assistant to your bedside

Smart speakers have gone beyond simply being speakers. It was really only a matter of time before many realized they actually also wanted to see what’s going on rather than just hear about it. But not everyone may want a large display that may or may not be watching them all the time. That’s where a new class of “smart clocks” come in. Like the new Lenovo Smart Clock with Google Assistant, a smart touch screen device you keep by your bed to somewhat ironically help you get better sleep.

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Samsung Family Hub refrigerator update brings new UI, richer experience

Samsung Family Hub refrigerator update brings new UI, richer experience

Samsung's smart home refrigerator Family Hub will receive an update this year that provides an overall "richer experience," according to the company, as well as more Bixby features and Family Board, an updated communal board that provides household members with a personalized experience. The updated offerings build upon the foundation Samsung set three years ago with the Family Hub's debut.

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Amazon Key adds garage deliveries, Ring support, and WiFi deadbolt

Amazon Key adds garage deliveries, Ring support, and WiFi deadbolt

Key by Amazon, the retailer's in-home package delivery option for Prime subscribers, has expanded with a new garage delivery option, as well as the new Schlage Encode Smart Wi-Fi Deadbolt and compatibility with Ring. Perhaps the most notable of the changes is Amazon Key for Garage, which feels like a less creepy compromise between leaving packages on the porch or giving a stranger access to one's home.

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Caseta by Lutron Fan Speed Control gets your ceiling fan online

Caseta by Lutron Fan Speed Control gets your ceiling fan online

The Internet of Things, voice control, and having everything in an app is all well and good, but sometimes you just want a good old-fashioned switch to control your fans and lights. Lutron's new Caséta Fan Speed Control isn't quite an old-school wall switch as you'd know it - they don't tend to have wireless connectivity, for instance - but it should be straightforward all the same.

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Amazon confirms Alexa device sales numbers, and it’s a lot

Amazon confirms Alexa device sales numbers, and it’s a lot

It's been clear for several years now that Amazon has been dominating the smart speaker market with its voice assistant Alexa, with the AI having successfully made the jump from the company's own Echo line of speakers to a wide range of third-party devices. Now Amazon has finally revealed how many products with built-in Alexa it's sold: more than 100 million.

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GE Lighting new smart bulbs get Google Home support to take on Hue

GE Lighting new smart bulbs get Google Home support to take on Hue

Your smart lighting options are about to get a lot brighter, with GE Lighting adding a new range of full color connected LED bulbs along with connected switches and Google Home integration to its range. The C by GE collection is ramping up to take on Philips Hue on its own turf, with the new products making their debut at CES 2019.

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Samsung rumored to debut cheaper Bixby smart speaker alongside Galaxy Home

Samsung rumored to debut cheaper Bixby smart speaker alongside Galaxy Home

Samsung has yet to even release its Galaxy Home, a new smart speaker that combines the Bixby assistant with premium audio features, and we're already hearing rumors about a second model being in development. First announced in August, the Galaxy Home still doesn't have a set price or release date, but it seems like Samsung is working on a cheaper version for when that days does arrive.

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