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Friday, December 1, 2017

Smart Lighting that doesn’t require smart bulbs

When people think about the design of their home, their minds often go first to the furniture and ecor. One oft-overlooked factor is the lighting. Too bright lighting can give residents a headache, while too dim lighting can cause squinting and bumping into things. While many smart lighting systems require smart lightbulbs in order to function properly, Deako doesn’t. What’s more is that this smart lighting system allows you to control the lights in your home with or without your mobile device. This means you can control the smart lighting even if you don’t have your phone handy. Want to save the current lighting scene so that you don’t have to reconfigure it every time? Simply use the app to save up to three at once.

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Los Angeles Times' favorite smart home devices

You don't have to be rich to have an interconnected smart home that you can control with the swipe of your finger or the sound of your voice. Smart home devices are getting more powerful every day as the prices continue to drop. All you need to get started is a smartphone and a dash of digital know-how to have a Jetsons-worthy home of the future. All of the recommended devices on our budget buyer's guide satisfy at least one of several needs: convenience, security or connectivity. Most of the gadgets are simple to use, with only a few requiring an involved installation process. Home automation doesn't have to break the bank. In fact, a quick online search will likely reveal better deals than the retail prices we have listed here with each item. Here's how to build a smart home on a budget for less than $100 per device.

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Smart Home and Kitchen

The microwave revolutionized cooking by heating food in seconds. Now, experts say the kitchen is poised for another reinvention. The next wave will be fueled by smart appliances and voice technology. Whirlpool has already teased a concept for the smart kitchen. It includes touchscreens that populate recipes from internet, a refrigerator that reminds you when you’re low on milk and the ability to heat up a meal. While we’re still at years away from a fully connected kitchen, most of this technology already exists. The biggest challenge is getting devices made by different companies to communicate. Zoe Leavitt, senior retail and consumer packaged goods analyst at research firm CB Insights, told CNN Tech the future of the kitchen comes down to one ingredient: data.

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Smart Thermostats for Smart Homes

These days, almost any object can be connected to smart home: speakers, refrigerators, lightbulbs but when a person first decides to dip his toe into home automation, for his first smart purchase, he is overwhelmingly likely to choose… a thermostat. Smart thermostats allow users to control their home’s temperature. Thermostats were among the first smart tech to emerge, but even in a world where smart devices abound, smart home thermostats remain among the most popular. Why? Smart thermostats are surprisingly cheap — smart thermostat models can range in price from under $100 to just above $200, which is well below the price of other smart appliances, like refrigerators, dishwashers, and clothes dryers. Thus, a smart thermostat is a relatively small investment for those just interested in smart home technology.

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Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Savant Unveils New Smart Thermostat

With the introduction of its Multi-STAT thermostat, Savant joins the smart thermostat contingency with an elegant multipurpose solution complete with a built-in color touchscreen. The Multi-STAT provides homeowners with access to Savant Scenes with a finger swipe of the color touchscreen. This feature provides them instant access to numerous automation events in conjunction with climate control such as lighting, entertainment and others. The Savant Multi-STAT is compatible with HVAC systems, is configurable for either Fahrenheit or Celsius, and can be connected to a wide variety of indoor and outdoor temperature sensors, slab sensors and humidity sensors. Users can take advantage of Savant’s HVAC scheduler, as well as climate related notifications to their mobile device.

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New Smart Speaker competes with Sonos

Google has announced its smart speaker, the Google Home Max, which combines Wi-Fi streaming with the Google Assistant in a larger form factor than the company's first model. While the Google Home Mini appears to be modeled after the Echo Dot, the Max seems to be looking past Amazon and focusing on what Sonos is doing. The Max is a stereo speaker which supports Google's own Chromecast built-in protocol for Wi-Fi music. It offers multiroom capabilities and compatibility with dozens of apps, as well as the ability to work alongside "hundreds" of other products.

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Monday, October 2, 2017

Millennials Want Smart Homes

It’s no surprise that millennials want smart home technology, but a recent survey conducted by Wakefield Research has confirmed it. Their findings showed that 86 percent of millennials are willing to pay more for smart home technology. In fact, millennials are willing to pay an average of 20 percent more a month in order to secure a home with smart technology. They like electronic access, keyless locks, interconnected doorbells, mobile-controlled security systems, voice-activated assistants, and more. Wakefield Research also asked baby boomers to share their thoughts on smart homes. About 65 percent of baby boomers said that they would pay more for smart tech in their homes. It’s significantly less than 86 percent, but still a good chunk of the home buying and selling population.

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