IFTTT (if this, then that) is one of those services you either love or just plain don't understand. It can be hard to integrate IFTTT into your life, but it's great if you have a lot of smart devices around the house. IFTTT is trying to make the service a little easier to use with the latest app update. Recipes are now called Applets, and the app has them front and center. Read More
Microsoft has a treat for you power users this Halloween. Their automated actions service, Microsoft Flow, is finally out of beta. Flow is part of Microsoft's new "power trio," combined with the company's PowerApps and Power BI tools. While those are mostly only useful to companies, Flow has definite use for normal people. In fact, after just an hour of playing with it, I'm convinced it's better than the popular IFTTT service.
With Microsoft Flow, you can make Buttons (a user-triggered set of tasks) or Flows (automated set of tasks, much like IFTTT recipes). As far as I can tell, you can only create new Flows and Buttons from scratch on the desktop site - on mobile you have to start from a template. Read More
The new Google Pixel is the first place you can get true integration with Assistant. Sure, a preview version of Assistant exists in Allo, but the Pixel version is the real deal. The same thing will be part of Google Home too. You can now add the Google Assistant channel to your IFTTT account to really unlock the power of voice commands. If there's anything you want to control via IFTTT, you can do it with Assistant. Read More
Piper's home security and automation unit has been improving year over year. Since my initial review, it has overhauled its app and enhanced many of its features, but it also recently released an IFTTT channel that enabled Amazon Alexa integration and let you schedule and automate a couple of actions.
Now Piper is improving its IFTTT channel with more triggers and actions. You can now control your Piper-connected lights with Alexa, get a tweet when Piper detects smoke via a connected sensor, and set dimmer levels or lights when events are detected while you're away.
The best new recipe though, in my opinion, is the one to upload videos recorded by Piper to Dropbox or Google Drive. Read More
When this does this, that should do that. To tell IFTTT to make this happen, you have to log into your account on the website or fire up the Android app. Now you will start seeing another choice. IFTTT is working with partners to bake integration into other apps. Read More
Microsoft wants to get in on some of that sweet action that services like If This, Then That and its competitors have been working on for years. To that end they've created Flow, a new web tool that automates actions across some of the major web services available at the moment, most of which (shocker!) aren't even owned by Microsoft. Flow allows users to set up automated "recipes" to complete tasks in Twitter, Dropbox, Google Drive, Slack, OneDrive, Github, Facebook, YouTube, and more. Read More
Whenever we meet new and interesting people, we always try to save their contact details so we can get in touch with them later and build bridges for a better relationship. However, it's also often the case that our address book becomes cluttered with random names with no context that we fail to remember or place or correctly. Seriously, who the heck is "Jim"?
I use Groups to keep things clear in my 900+ contact list, and parenthesis with a small description whenever necessary as well. But IFTTT is trying a different and more seamless approach to contact management. There's a new Google Contacts channel on the automation service's site. By enabling it, you open up the door to several recipes like marking a new contact addition on the calendar (this is when you met them), adding them to a spreadsheet (as a big contact database), saving them to Evernote (for contacts belonging to a certain group), syncing between iOS contacts and Google Contacts, and more. Read More
I love crowdfunding projects that work well, especially when the product delivers relatively on time and with most of the features working as promised. Piper's home monitoring / security system is one of these success stories, but despite the product's hardware being great, I have been letdown by its poorly designed software and that didn't change since September 2014 when I first reviewed it. But Piper has been growing up in the meantime, releasing a night vision hardware version, adding Life360 integration, and offering several accessories like sensors and lights, and now it's ready to graduate its software and automation too. Read More
The OnHub has been out for more than six months now, and it hasn't evolved much beyond the basic router functionality. Google promised us smart home features, and now it's starting to happen. The latest OnHub update added support for IFTTT. The channel is already live for you to start crafting automation recipes, but your OnHub needs to be on firmware version 7978.51.0, which is rolling out now. Read More
Amazon Cloud Drive is a way to get around storing your stuff on your own hardware. Instead, you can keep it on someone else's. It this case, Amazon's.
IFTTT is a service that automates the way the sites you visit interact with each other. Those letters stand for "If This Then That." Read More