IoT

Portal TV heads up Facebook’s new smart screen lineup

Portal TV heads up Facebook’s new smart screen lineup

Facebook has announced a big refresh for its Portal lineup, today announcing three new devices for the family of devices. The first is a device with a 10-inch display that's taking up the standard "Portal" moniker. It's joined by the 8-inch Portal Mini and a new device called the Portal TV.

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Philips Hue Play HDMI Sync Box makes a TV light show from any source

Philips Hue Play HDMI Sync Box makes a TV light show from any source

The color-changing Hue bulbs in your living room are about to get a lot more useful, with the Philips Hue Play HDMI Sync Box enabling just about any media source to get its own "surround light" show. Connecting in-between a TV and your HDMI sources, the new adapter wirelessly controls the smart lighting in the room, matching it to the colors on-screen.

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WiFi 6 certification is here and that’s good news for your new iPhone 11 Pro

WiFi 6 certification is here and that’s good news for your new iPhone 11 Pro

After a fair amount of build up, WiFi 6 certification is rolling out today. With this certification comes the promise of better and faster WiFi, just in time for the arrival of 5G and home networks powered by it. Of course, there are a number of manufacturers who didn't wait for the WiFi Alliance to launch this certification program, but now that it's here, devices can go through the process and carry official branding afterward.

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Facebook Portal TV add-on rumors hint at a strategy shake-up

Facebook Portal TV add-on rumors hint at a strategy shake-up

Facebook isn't giving up on Portal, with the social network reportedly readying a Portal TV device for the holidays that would expand its controversial hardware into greater content consumption, potentially in the hope of bypassing skepticism around how trustworthy the company is. Launched last year, Facebook Portal is a pair of video calling smart displays, which was debuted right in the midst of a privacy crisis.

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IKEA’s Sonos remote will be $14.99 in the US

IKEA’s Sonos remote will be $14.99 in the US

Sonos has quietly added a US product page for its SYMFONISK remote, a handy - and inexpensive - controller for its Sonos-powered speakers, ahead of its expected launch next month. The gadget will give Sonos speaker owners a way to remotely control their music, without having to pull out a phone and load the Sonos app, or speak to an assistant like Amazon Alexa.

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Amazon’s holding a big hardware event on September 25

Amazon’s holding a big hardware event on September 25

Amazon will hold its next big hardware event on September 25, the company has confirmed today, with Alexa likely to feature heavily on the menu. The launch comes a year after Amazon's 2018 devices event, which saw products as varied as an Alexa-enabled microwave and a smart wall clock.

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Sonos One SL and Port go on sale for audiophiles and the assistant-averse

Sonos One SL and Port go on sale for audiophiles and the assistant-averse

Two of Sonos' newest whole-home audio products are arriving on shelves, with the Sonos One SL and Sonos Port both available from today. Announced last week alongside the new Sonos Move - the company's first battery-powered and Bluetooth-compatible speaker - the two new models eschew integrated assistants like Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant.

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Google Home update makes it easier to call smart displays

Google Home update makes it easier to call smart displays

Google has quietly rolled out a new button in the Google Home app that enables users to call their smart display device, assuming they have one. The button appears in the Google Home app, though it seems to only show up for people who have a smart display with Google Assistant on their account. Tapping the button automatically triggers a video call with the display, making the process as simple as hitting a contact bubble.

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HomePod multi-user support is finally on the way

HomePod multi-user support is finally on the way

Apple packed a lot of announcements into its iPhone reveal event yesterday, but one device that didn't get a shoutout is the AirPod. Despite that, it seems that Apple still has big plans for the speaker throughout the rest of the year. In all, there are three incoming features for the AirPod, and one in particular is something users have been asking for since the HomePod launched.

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Bowers & Wilkins Formation Flex gives HomePod some high-end competition

Bowers & Wilkins Formation Flex gives HomePod some high-end competition

Back in April, Bowers & Wilkins revealed what it calls the Formation Suite, a collection of five different products intended to play nice with one another and give users multi-room audio options. Today, the company introduced what could wind up being the core of the Formation Suite, announcing a new speaker called the Formation Flex. It seems that the Formation Flex is a challenger to speakers like Apple's HomePod and Sonos' smart speakers, so Bowers & Wilkins definitely has some market competition.

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Google Nest Hub Max Review: The Assistant will see you now

Google Nest Hub Max Review: The Assistant will see you now

The Nest Hub Max isn't just a larger smart display, it's Google's first where the Assistant can see you, too. If the original Nest Hub was a connected digital photo frame that just so happened to have Assistant smarts baked in, the Nest Hub Max builds on that with a bigger screen, better audio, video calling, gesture control, and - most controversially - facial recognition. Then again, it also comes with a significantly bigger, $229 price tag.

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Google patent hints at future AI-powered baby monitor

Google patent hints at future AI-powered baby monitor

A Google patent application published on Friday details a baby monitor powered by artificial intelligence, enabling it to monitor a baby for signs of activity in order to alert parents over WiFi. The patent details technology that monitors a baby's eyes, among other things, not just detecting movement and audio, but rather intelligently understanding it in order to determine whether it's time to check on the infant.

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