Photokina 2014 highlights

Around The Home

The Vivint Sky home automation system is centered on a 7-inch display and uses data analyt...

Channeling the many functions of the modern home into one centralized hub has been the focus of a growing number of home automation devices. With that said, many still rely on some form of manual control, be it through voice, touchscreen or gesture. Vivint is looking to ramp up the automation in home automation with Vivint Sky, a smart home system designed to learn and adapt to its users' habits.  Read More

The Haiku with SenseME technology ceiling fan uses a range of sensors to regulate temperat...

If you're already finding it hard to keep up with all the smart climate control systems for the home that are hitting the market, then this might just be the one to send you into a spin. Big Ass Fans has added its SenseME technology to its Haiku ceiling fan, which includes Wi-Fi connectivity and sensors that enable it to regulate temperature and kick into action when someone enters the room.  Read More

The Edyn smart garden system helps monitor and track conditions in the garden

It's not always easy to find the time to research the ideal plants for your garden and then make sure they're given the attention they need to flourish. Edyn was developed to help users monitor and track environmental conditions in their garden, provide guidance on how conditions can be improved and water the plants automatically as required. The smart garden system comprises a sensor, a smart water-valve and a mobile app.  Read More

The Hey Joe travel mug brews coffee on demand, a heating plate keeping the beverage warm u...

With portable espresso machines, French press mugs and other brewing gadgets percolating up all over the place and coffee shops on every second street corner, you'd be forgiven for wondering, does procuring a cup need to be any more convenient? For a pair of Atlanta-based entrepreneurs, the answer is, yes, which is why they developed the Hey Joe mug that can prepare a brew on demand, meaning a fresh cup of coffee is only ever a push of a button away.  Read More

The cell stacks that are the heart of a home fuel cell system being developed by Fraunhofe...

As the world shifts to alternative forms of energy, ways to make homes less dependent on the grid continue to gather steam. Fuel cells, which are more efficient and have lower emissions than internal combustion engines seem like a logical candidate for taking up the slack, so the Fraunhofer Institute for Ceramic Technologies and Systems (IKTS) in Dresden is partnering with the heater manufacturer Vaillant to develop a domestic fuel cell system that uses natural gas to produce both heating and electricity.  Read More

The Rmdlo is a lightweight folding colander

The colander (strainer) is unlikely to be top of many people's list of things that need reinventing. That said, a folding, lightweight take on the utensil called the Rmdlo seems to have captured people's imaginations, having exceeded its Kickstarter campaign target with time left to run.  Read More

The Flatev makes fresh-baked tortillas from individual dough pods

Say what you will about the wastefulness of Keurig coffee-makers, you've gotta admit that the things are convenient – you just stick a K-Cup in the top, and a single serving of coffee comes out the bottom. Well, inventor Carlos Ruiz is now hoping to bring that same convenience to freshly-baked flatbreads, with his Flatev tortilla-maker.  Read More

Click and Grow's Smart Herb Garden aims to help people grow herbs at home with a minimum o...

It's rare that reviewing a device takes six weeks, but then, we don't usually have to wait for nature to let us actually write the review. Click and Grow's Smart Herb garden was released earlier this year. It aims to help users grow perfect herbs with a minimum of effort.  Read More

Alyt is a voice commanded smart home integration system powered by Android

The trickle of devices looking to turn the family home into smart homes whereby residents can remotely control everything from household lighting to security systems has turned into a flood recently. The latest device promising to help usher in this suburban technological utopia is the Alyt, an Android-powered smart home system that can be controlled not only through an app on a mobile device, but also via voice commands.  Read More

The eCool lets you enjoy a cool beer at any time without ever having to leave your own gar...

Spending a day lounging in a warm garden is absolute bliss. Until you have to rise from your seat to fetch a cold drink from the fridge. The eCool eliminates that inconvenience, providing a cool repository for your favorite tipple.  Read More

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