Back in June, Philips announced that the Hue ecosystem would be compatible with Apple’s HomeKit. There was speculation if we’d need to purchase another Hue hub, or if the existing hub could be updated via software to support HomeKit. After plenty of leaks, and even a hands-on prior to launching, Philips has officially released a new Hue bridge to the masses. Turns out that if you want HomeKit compatibility, you will need to purchase a new hub. This falls inline with other vendors who have had to “relaunch” their products with updated hardware to meet Apple’s security requirements. The good news for existing Hue customers though, is that Philips will offer a 33% discount to upgrade.
Voice search has been greatly enhanced on the new Fire TV. The newest version of the Fire TV OS incorporates Alexa, the voice assistant used in the Amazon Echo $179.99 at Amazon. This lets you ask simple questions about news, sports, weather, and general knowledge, and even make reminder lists that sync with the Amazon Echo app. For general media searches, you can speak any title, artist, genre, or even app into the microphone and it will give you search results. I easily found everything from the Crossy Road app to Jeffrey Combs films with voice search, without entering any text.
Currently, the home automation features controllable with Alexa on the Amazon Echo aren’t available through the Fire TV. These features could be added with a software update in the future, but for now, you can’t use the Fire TV’s voice control to do things like adjust the Philips Hue $79.97 at Amazon lights in your home. Alexa support is not currently available on the original Fire TV, but Amazon plans to add it as a free update.
Amazon’s Echo Bluetooth speaker can already control a wealth of home automation devices, from Samsung’s SmartThings to Philips’ Hue, but now it has added yet another – Insteon.
Like other home automation devices interfacing with Echo, users can use voice recognition to control the various products located around their home. For example, turning on a light is as simple as saying “Alexa, set living room lamp to 50 percent.” Users aren’t forced to turn on each light one by one either.
The Logitech Harmony Elite, which was previewed at IFA, is now available and consists of a home hub and touchscreen all-in-one control for (wait for it) 270, 000 devices, so far. The Harmony Elite comes with support for Bluetooth, IP, infrared and a range of proprietary formats, and has access to a database of 225, 000 existing products for zero-configuration. We asked Ian Crowe, Product Management Director whether having a single point of control for everything is just going to make life more confusing.
Apple, Google and Amazon have been investing in IoT to achieve first-mover advantage. In 2014 Apple announced the launch of HomeKit, marketed as home automation platform. The first shipment of devices, manufactured by Ecobee and Phillips Hue, are set to appear in retail later in 2015.
A lot of intelligent people believe that a platform like Apples HomeKit will be the way we control the smart home of the future. Each kit runs $40, and it includes a white Hue bulb and a dimming remote. The remote uses the ZigBee radio protocol to control them in tandem, and it promises to last a minimum of three years, or 50, 000 uses, before it needs its battery replaced.
The Philips Hue is one of the most popular smart lighting solutions. Now, the company is looking to deliver that functionality to more homes with the new Philips Hue wireless dimming kit. The Philips Hue wireless dimming kit is another easy way to put smart lighting into the home.
Philips, the company behind the much-loved Hue lighting system (which will soon work alongside Apples HomeKit protocol), has launched a brand new accessory designed to help out the technophobes in your household: a physical dimmer switch that can be attached to your wall, or which can function as a handheld, wireless controller for your Hue lighting setup.
Home automation systems, does Joe Dada of Insteon know much about it? You bet he does. Listen to him talk with Grant Imahara and Mouser about how he makes smart homes even smarter with automation technology that works with dual mesh networking. Insteon advanced automation even supports the Apple Wa