Slowly but surely, devices like Philips Hue bulbs and the Nest thermostat are making our homes smarter. But just how smart can they get? To find out, Intel has created the Smart Tiny House, which explores the future of the connected home by packing a host of smart tech into a 210 sq ft (20 sq m) "living lab."
You'd think having weather apps on our phones would mean we'd always be prepared, but we still forget to check them. The Raincheck umbrella stand removes the need to check the weather. It shows users whether they need to take a brolly out with them as they leave the house.
As the doors close on another packed IFA at Berlin's Messe fairgrounds
and exhibitors begin dismantling booths and packing away all the
consumer tech treasures, Gizmag takes a look back at three technology
trends that battled it out for showstopper supremacy at IFA 2015. Connected appliances came into the spotlight to take center stage, slightly overshadowing a strong showing from smartwatches, with HDR TV technology elbowing in to herald the next big thing in living room entertainment.
The mechanical button or switch is that most simple of user interfaces. So simple that just about every electrical device in the home, from lights to coffee machines, will have one. With the goal of letting these legacy devices join the home automation bandwagon, South Korean startup Naran has come up with Microbot Push – a wireless robotic "finger" designed to operate standard buttons and switches.
Umbrellas never seem to be around when you need them and even if you do have one in hand when the rain starts to fall, they can often be a struggle to put up. The motorized, push button-operated, weather-sensing Haz Umbrella is designed to tackle these issues.
Sony Mobile, the wholly owned Sony subsidiary formerly known as Sony Ericsson, is going upwardly mobile by teaming up with Japanese robotics firm ZMP to launch a drone company. Aerosense Inc. will launch next month and target enterprise customers with a focus on the internet of things applications.
Grilling may be one of the most primal forms of cooking, stripping modern cooking right down to the basics of man – meat and fire. But that doesn't mean it's not slowly evolving into a more intelligent, refined creature, as evidenced by the development of numerous wireless smart thermometers like the BBiQ and myriad other innovative grilling gadgets and accessories. The Bright Grill brings app-based wireless monitoring and control to the grill itself, and it does so in a package built for every type of grill enthusiast, including those that live in small apartments and condos.
When Google proposed its Open Web of Things initiative last December, it was seeking to increase interoperability, security, and an elegant user interface in the global movement towards connected smart devices. The company has awarded half a million dollars towards Carnegie Mellon University to develop its campus and eventually Pittsburg, PA into a "living lab" of cheap and ubiquitous sensors, integrated apps, and user-developed tools to work towards Google's vision of an integrated machine future.
Google has announced a new operating system for the Internet of Things,
known as Project Brillo. It's built on a stripped-down version of
Android, provides a common language for connected home devices, as well
as a user-friendly interface that makes it easier to set up hardware.