Technology has made our phones smart, it has made our cars smart and now it is making our homes smart too. Smarthome tech was front and center at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas this year.
Neato's newest robotic vacuum is connected to your home wi-fi network. It can send you notifications when the vacuum is finished, when the dust bin is full or if it gets stuck. Expect to pay for this smart vacuum, $700 for the Botvac Connected.
A smarthome should start at the front door. August was showing off their new Doorbell Cam at CES. It connects to the normal wires already in your home and still rings the standard doorbell chime. The difference is, it also sends a notification to your smartphone with a picture of the person at your front door. If you're not home, you can actually talk to the person from your phone. $200 for the Cam and if you also have an August smart lock, you could even let that person into your home.
The Roost 9-volt looks like a normal battery, it's not! Not only does it pack 5 years of battery power but it also has a wi-fi chip, a microprocessor, and a microphone. Once setup and installed in a standard smoke alarm, it can listen for the smoke alarm sound and notify you on your smartphone when it goes off. It'll also give you a heads-up, weeks in advance, before the battery gets low. This means, no more 3am smoke alarm chirps. For $35, it's a great deal considering you'd pay about $20 for 5 good 9-volt batteries anyway.
Controlling all of your smarthome devices can be complicated. Nobody wants to pull out their phone just to turn on a lightbulb or start some music. Fibaro is trying to fix that with their Swipe controller. It can be setup as a picture from or you can built it into the wall, behind the drywall. Swipe your hand in front of the controller and the Fibaro Swipe will do various things. In fact you can set different gestures to do different things. It runs on the Z-Wave protocol so it works with many mainstream smart lightbulbs, thermostats and other smart devices. Fibaro Swipe sells for $200.
We have seen many companies selling smart lightbulbs but BeON is taking it to a new level. The BeON bulbs have an LED light bulb and a brain. The brain can listen and learn. You can have bulbs reply your normal day when you're on vacation. It can even hear the doorbell or a smoke alarm and respond accordingly. The company says the BeON system adds another layer of security to your home. A set of 3 BeON bulbs is $200.
Check out my interview at CES with the folks at BeON:AlertMe