There are plenty of companies building smart hubs for your home, but it's safe to say that SmartThings, which was bought by Samsung, is one of the most popular. That's not only due to the wide range of connectivity options it has, like both ZigBee and Z-Wave, and the 10-hour backup battery life, but also thanks to the big number of smart home gadgets that are compatible with it. Even better, the community is very active and usually figures out a way, whenever technically possible, to add compatibility to brands and accessories that aren't supported officially.
One of the last companies to integrate with SmartThings is Google and its Google Home speaker / voice control hub. Read More
Google Home was announced earlier this year at I/O, and since then we've heard little about the product itself. Today at the #madebygoogle event, Google has released all the details, including price, shipping date, more about its abilities, and when you can pre-order it (i.e. throw your money at Google). Read More
If you're anything like me, you don't take kindly to unexpected visitors. The doorbell is a sign that something has gone terribly wrong, and I may soon be forced to interact with other people. Shhh, just be quiet and they'll probably go away. Okay, maybe you're not exactly like me, but perhaps you want to know who's at the door before you get up. The Ring WiFi doorbell can do that, and it's on sale for $169.99 right now on Amazon. Read More
The Google OnHub was launched one year ago with a lot of implicit promises about smart home functionality. We never saw any of that materialize, though the router has gotten more capable. Now there's finally some smart home integration happening in the form of a Philips Hue partnership. Oh hey, guess what still doesn't work. Yep, the USB port. Read More
Nest has seen better days. A couple of months ago, a reshuffle was announced at the top of the company's hierarchy, with CEO Tony Fadell leaving and Marwan Fawaz taking his place at the helm. Nest has also been under pressure to bring more products from the pipeline to the market and to be more profitable.
It seems that there's another reshuffle in Nest's future though, according to a report by Fortune. The Nest platform team (think software) might soon be moving to Google, jumping from one Alphabet subsidiary to another. It will be part of a team lead by Hiroshi Lockheimer, current senior VP of Android, that will focus on the smart home and living room, create a unified Internet of Things platform, and continue to develop the upcoming Google Home. Read More
If you're getting started with a smart home setup or working on an upgrade, your wallet is probably feeling pretty light. While you're still on your own for all the connected devices, Amazon has the best price we've seen on Samsung's SmartThings Hub at $79, $20 below the typical going rate. Read More
A smart home is every geek's dream, so it's great to see the idea becoming more and more of a reality, with Nest, Alexa, Google Assistant (soon), and Apple's HomeKit making our homes smarter and automated. Accessory maker Logitech, which already has the Harmony Remote, is adding to its range with the Logitech POP button and accompanying app.
The POP can control a lot of devices, from Phillips Hue lightbulbs to Sonos speakers, to door locks and blinds, plus of course the Harmony platform. Each button can be programmed with three individual commands which can then do a host of different things to control your home. Read More
Amazon Echo is about to have company. As the New York Times reported, Google has a competing device in the works, and it has the full weight of the search giant's natural language processing behind it. If you haven't already heard the name, you could probably take a guess. It's Google Home. Read More
Belkin makes a series of gadgets intended to make your home smarter. Think WiFi-connected light switches and outlets that let you toggle anything you plug in. Now these products work with Nest. Read More
Ever since it sold off its mobile business to Microsoft and its mapping entity to a consortium of German carmakers, Nokia has been struggling to find its identity and reinvent itself amidst a changing and challenging ecosystem. Its network arm is still going strong, but the brand has lost much of, if not all of its halo when it comes to consumer-facing technologies.
Now Nokia might be looking at a new direction and an interesting way to sneak back into the market, as a digital health provider. It announced today that it wants to acquire Withings, a French company that specializes in Internet of Things products and connected health gadgets. Read More