IoT

Alexa Announcements voice broadcasting arrives on all third-party devices

Alexa Announcements voice broadcasting arrives on all third-party devices

If you own an Alexa device from a company other than Amazon, the Internet retailer has announced, you may soon get access to the service's voice Announcements feature. Amazon has added Announcements support for all certified third-party Alexa devices, expanding the availability of its voice broadcasting capability. The feature works similar to a one-way intercom, enabling users in one room to make an announcement is other rooms via Alexa.

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Always-listening Alexa could skip the wake word – if you trusted it

Always-listening Alexa could skip the wake word – if you trusted it

A newly published Amazon patent application details technology that would enable Alexa to listen to what you say before you summon her. The 'pre-wakework speech processing' ability would support phrases that put the wake word ('Alexa,' for example) after the command instead of before it. The technology would fix the 'problem' of clunky wake word placement in phrases.

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Amazon’s secret wearable might have an emotion-detecting Alexa

Amazon’s secret wearable might have an emotion-detecting Alexa

Amazon is already neck-deep in the world of smart assistants with Alexa, but today we're learning that it may be working on new technology that will make these AI assistants quite a bit more capable. Amazon is said to working on a new wearable device that can discern human emotions, and while it would indeed be pretty cool if it was able to pick up on human emotions accurately, it's sure to spark an entirely new privacy debate.

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Wyze Bulb just the start, budget smart home firm promises

Wyze Bulb just the start, budget smart home firm promises

The unexpected arrival of the Wyze Bulb has been followed by open sales through the company's app, with the notably affordable smart lighting set to ship in June. Spotted earlier in the week, the Wyze Bulb takes on established challengers like Philips Hue and LIFX.

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Samsung Galaxy Home Mini could beat its big brother to release

Samsung Galaxy Home Mini could beat its big brother to release

It's been quite some time since Samsung first revealed the Galaxy Home, its Bixby-powered smart speaker. That happened way back in August, and we still haven't been given a release date for it yet. Despite all of that, Samsung is already looking toward the future of the Galaxy Home brand. As it turns out, the company may be plotting a smaller Galaxy Home that's meant to better compete with budget speakers from Google and Amazon.

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Wyze Bulb is an $8 bomb in the smart lighting market

Wyze Bulb is an $8 bomb in the smart lighting market

Wyze has made a name for itself with its unexpectedly affordable connected security cameras, and now the Wyze Bulb aims to do the same for smart lighting. Taking on Philips Hue, LIFX, and others, the Wyze Bulb's big boast is that it's priced from just $7.99, a fraction of what you'd pay for rivals.

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Bose Home Speaker 300 revealed as smart speakers add Google Assistant

Bose Home Speaker 300 revealed as smart speakers add Google Assistant

Bose smart speakers are getting a Google Assistant upgrade today, with the company's connected models adding Google's helpful AI, though you may want to wait until the summer for the newest Bose hardware. The update is being released today for existing Bose models, including both standalone smart speakers and the company's range of connected soundbars too.

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Lutron Aurora Philips Hue dimmer is the smartest smart-switch yet

Lutron Aurora Philips Hue dimmer is the smartest smart-switch yet

Philips Hue smart bulbs inadvertently cut off from the network could be a problem no longer, with Lutron launching an Aurora dimmer accessory that also prevents accidental switch-offs. Hue bulbs are now a mainstay of many smart home installations, however they typically come with one lingering problem. For the bulbs to work, the power must remain switched on.

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Alexa Guard gives your home an extra layer of security

Alexa Guard gives your home an extra layer of security

During its Alexa event back in September, Amazon announced a new home security feature called Alexa Guard. With it, Amazon said, you could turn your Echo devices into something of a watchdog while you're away, having them monitor for the sound of breaking glass or alerts from your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. Today, a bit more than half a year after it was first revealed, Alexa Guard is starting its roll out to Echo owners.

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Sonos Google Assistant is here: What you need to know

Sonos Google Assistant is here: What you need to know

Sonos' Google Assistant support is finally launching today, joining Alexa on the smart speakers. It's been a long time coming, too, Sonos electing to miss its original 2018 release in favor of spending more time making sure its two voice assistants would happily co-exist on the same hardware. Now, courtesy of a free software update, we can see how that works for ourselves.

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Wyze Sense Review: The $20 home motion and contact sensor system

Wyze Sense Review: The $20 home motion and contact sensor system

Wyze, the company with incredibly inexpensive security cameras, has launched Wyze Sense, its first motion sensor system designed for home use. The Wyze Sense kit is now available to purchase following its brief pre-order period, giving consumers a small motion sensor and two contact sensors to complement their existing Wyze Cam and/or Wyze Cam Pan security cameras. Should Wyze Cam owners spend another twenty bucks to pick up the kit? The answer is a resounding yes.

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Google Nest Home Hub 10″ smart display adds camera: Pricing and release

Google Nest Home Hub 10″ smart display adds camera: Pricing and release

Google has a new smart display, the Nest Hub Max, a bigger, camera-enabled sibling to the renamed Google Home Hub, which is now the Nest Hub. The new Nest Hub Max has a 10-inch touchscreen now, focused on multi-user households, as well as the option of face recognition so that individual people see the information that's most relevant to them.

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