smart home

The IoT will survive this Juicero scorn

The IoT will survive this Juicero scorn

In a shocking revelation that came as a surprise to practically nobody, a $400 connected juicer may not be the must-have in the kitchen that it was pitched as. Nor is it the best poster-child for the Internet of Things and, as is usually the way, scorn heaped on Juicero has spilled over to the connected home more broadly. After all, with $120m in funding, some are already describing the company as the epitome of IoT hype.

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Your Mercedes now takes orders from Alexa and Google Home

Your Mercedes now takes orders from Alexa and Google Home

If the smart home is so darn smart, why shouldn't the garage be too? Mercedes-Benz is expanding its cars' support for the popular virtual assistants, with select models now taking instructions from both Amazon's Alexa and Google Home. Although we're still some way from being able to ask an Echo to have your S-Class dispatched to your front door, the functionality could still be a time-saver in the morning.

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Google Home multiple user support recognizes you by voice

Google Home multiple user support recognizes you by voice

Google Home is addressing one of its most criticized features, adding the ability to differentiate up to six people by voice and serve them up their own, personalized results. The smart speaker launched back in May last year as Google's answer to Amazon's Alexa and the Echo but, like Amazon's system, had a big issue for those in multi-person homes. Only one person's Google account could be logged in at a time.

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The robot war has started! iRobot’s robo-vac patent war, that is

The robot war has started! iRobot’s robo-vac patent war, that is

It's robot wars, but not quite like the Terminator movies warned it would be. iRobot has launched a salvo of litigation against a whole host of rivals, alleging that collectively they infringe on a total of six patents the company holds around robotic vacuum cleaner technology. While warring robo-vacs might sound comical, the stakes are high.

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Logitech Pop HomeKit bundle gives Apple’s Home a smart button

Logitech Pop HomeKit bundle gives Apple’s Home a smart button

Logitech's Pop is getting an Apple HomeKit upgrade, allowing the programable wireless buttons to act as light-switches, scene-triggers, and more for iOS fans. Launched in August last year, Pop offers a triple-function button that can be customized to control hundreds of devices in your smart home. Now, there's a second version for those who went the HomeKit route.

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Alexa tipped to come to smart thermostat ecobee4

Alexa tipped to come to smart thermostat ecobee4

It was only a matter of time before Amazon found its way in to a smart thermostat with Alexa. The time is now, and the product is branded by ecobee. A set of product marketing materials has turned up with both a microphone and Amazon's blue light bar - which indicates the presence of Alexa in all her voice assistant glory. This new version of the ecobee thermostat seems to have a redesigned set of industrial design outer bits, too.

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Google Assistant will stop saving shopping lists to Keep

Google Assistant will stop saving shopping lists to Keep

When Amazon kicked off the smart speaker wars, the Amazon Echo was mostly seen as an odd, voice-activated shopping assistant. Since then, the category has blossomed into so much more. Almost as if coming full circle, however, Google is enacting some changes to how its own Home speakers and smart Assistant work. Starting Monday, shopping lists created by voice using Assistant will reside in its own specialized place and will no longer be stored on Google Keep.

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“Invoke” could be Harman Kardon’s Cortana-powered speaker

“Invoke” could be Harman Kardon’s Cortana-powered speaker

The personal assistant war has long moved from smartphones to smart homes the day Amazon launched its Echo speaker and introduced Alexa to the world. Pretty soon, Google followed with its Home (not Gnome) and Google Assistant and soon, Microsoft will do likewise with Cortana. That device has already been teased before to bear Harman Kardon's brand but very little else. Now some more details are falling into place courtesy of leaks, including a rather unusual but still totally generic name: Invoke.

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Ford designed a baby crib that simulates car rides

Ford designed a baby crib that simulates car rides

What you're seeing here is a baby crib designed and built by Ford. Yes, the car company, and no, this isn't a late April Fools' joke. It's dubbed the Max Motor Dreams, and it's essentially a "smart bed" for babies that can simulate the feel of riding in a car — a well-known trick for parents with little ones that have difficulty falling asleep. It uses sound, lighting, and motion to mimic the feel of a gentle car ride from the backseat.

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This Alexa update makes Echo your smart bulb’s best friend

This Alexa update makes Echo your smart bulb’s best friend

Amazon has dramatically improved how Alexa, its smart assistant found, works with connected bulbs, allowing users to control color and white light temperature by voice. The tunable lighting control update, announced today, allows developers to integrate color and temperature control with simple voice commands, and is compatible with some of the most popular connected bulbs on the market. It's a feature which has been much-requested by smart home fans.

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Logitech Harmony, Google Assistant give your voice more power

Logitech Harmony, Google Assistant give your voice more power

If you ask Google, it would probably prefer that its Google Home speaker be the hub for your smart home. The reality, however, is that there are half a dozen or so different smart home "languages", some of which Google Home doesn't speak. It needs a multi-lingual interpreter to put them all under the mesmerizing control of your voice. And that is exactly what this integration with Logitech Harmony promises to bring.

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Now Google Home can control your August Smart Lock

Now Google Home can control your August Smart Lock

August's Smart Lock has added Google Home support, allowing users to ask the Google Assistant to lock their doors. The functionality which rolls out from today, builds on the smart speaker's growing range of Internet of Things abilities, which already include controlling lights among other things. However, in the name of security, August isn't granting full key-holder privileges to the Google Assistant quite yet.

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