smart home

LG SmartThinQ appliances now speak with Amazon Alexa

LG SmartThinQ appliances now speak with Amazon Alexa

LG might not be as daring, or as obnoxious, as rival and compatriot Samsung when it comes to creating new technologies, but it has one admirable trait. It knows how to play nice with others. Instead of creating its own personal assistant like Bixby, it is instead leveraging the capabilities of existing ones like Google Assistant and, now, Amazon Alexa. Now it is bringing that sensibility to its SmartThinQ line of appliances, allowing users to control dozens of Wi-Fi connected LG home products with just their voice.

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We’re all over this Amazon Echo Spot double-deal: Here’s why

We’re all over this Amazon Echo Spot double-deal: Here’s why

It's Alexa's cutest device, but Amazon's Echo Spot needn't break the bank courtesy of a deal the retailer is running on the spherical smart speaker. Launched in December, the touchscreen-fronted gadget is more than just an alarm clock: it's a full Alexa smart home device. Usually it's $130, but Amazon is offering a way to save $40 on your order.

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Can Apple bring itself to save HomePod?

Can Apple bring itself to save HomePod?

HomePod was meant to be Apple's triumphant splash in the smart speaker market, but the reality has been a little less rewarding. Official sales numbers still haven't been shared - and, most likely, never will - but reports this week suggest demand for the Siri-powered speaker has been a fraction of what Apple predicted. Ironically, though, there are a few fairly straightforward ways that HomePod could be improved. Apple could even do some of them without needing to change its hardware at all. The question is not so much how Apple could do it, really, it's if Apple could.

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This great Ring Video Doorbell deal is thanks to Amazon’s acquisition

This great Ring Video Doorbell deal is thanks to Amazon’s acquisition

Amazon's acquisition of Ring has completed, and the retailer is celebrating not with cake but with a price cut on one of the smart doorbell-maker's most popular products. Announced back in February, the deal to acquire smart home device-maker Ring was seen as Amazon attempting to bolster its security and IoT credentials, though the two have worked together before.

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Nest Cam IQ Outdoor Review

Nest Cam IQ Outdoor Review

Nest has built a name for itself for its sleekly-designed, premium-priced security cameras, thermostats, and other connected home tech, and the Nest Cam IQ Outdoor is no different. Latest in the Google-owned company's intelligence-toting cameras, it packs a surprising amount of smarts into an elegant housing.

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Amazon Key keyless entry, remote monitoring rolls out nationwide

Amazon Key keyless entry, remote monitoring rolls out nationwide

Remember the Amazon Key announcement last October? The in-home delivery aspect of the service may have eclipsed the fact that, underneath it all, Amazon Key is really just a smart lock and smart security camera combo. The retailer’s latest announcement may help drive home that fact. Amazon Key’s key features, like guest access and remote unlocking, are now rolling out to all Amazon customers in the US, pushing the company’s ambitions in the smart home security market forward.

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Alexa Announcements make Echo a home PA system [Updated]

Alexa Announcements make Echo a home PA system [Updated]

Amazon is turning Alexa into a public address system for the home, with Echo speakers now able to make one-way announcements to summon the family down for dinner. Dubbed Alexa Announcements, the new feature is like a one-way intercom, Amazon suggests.

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Google Home Smart Display is still on the table

Google Home Smart Display is still on the table

Google has a rather curious strategy when it comes to hardware products. On the one hand, it partners with other manufacturers and licenses them technologies or software to use. On the other hand, it has also started to create its own hardware to compete with those partners. At CES earlier this year, some of those partners revealed their take on a budding new device category called “smart displays”. Curiously, Google didn’t come out with its own. That, however, doesn’t mean it won’t. It might just be letting others test the waters for it first.

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Alexa Donations turns Echo into charity collection box

Alexa Donations turns Echo into charity collection box

Amazon has turned Alexa into a donation-box rattling charity worker, adding the ability to donate charitable contributions by voice to its virtual assistant. Called Alexa Donations, the service launches today with almost fifty charities supported. However, Amazon says more are in the pipeline.

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These are Amazon’s Alexa white-box devices

These are Amazon’s Alexa white-box devices

There's an array of white-box devices coming with Amazon's Alexa inside. A white-box device, in this case, means a fully operational piece of hardware made by a company willing to work with big-brand-name companies to sell said products with different brand names attached. Companies that make white-box devices are called Original Design Manufacturers (ODM). Amazon just revealed a whole mess of ODM partners rolling with Alexa technology.

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Nest Cam IQ owners are getting a free wall mount

Nest Cam IQ owners are getting a free wall mount

Nest is giving Nest Cam IQ indoor camera early-adopters a free wall mount, filling in one of the more commonly complained-about omissions in the box. The more intelligent version of Nest's indoor security camera, the Nest Cam IQ out-performed its predecessor in just about every way, aside from one: it didn't come with a wall mount.

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Kuvee smart wine bottle joins the IoT graveyard

Kuvee smart wine bottle joins the IoT graveyard

The Internet of Things claims another victim, with smart wine bottle startup Kuvée telling owners that it's shutting down. The company raised $6m and had a hit crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo back in 2016, with its $199 Kuvée FreshPour system that promised to keep wine fresh for up to two months.

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