Ul­ti­mate Smart Home Gad­gets

The In­ter­net of Things is con­nect­ing the world like never be­fore. Low-cost sen­sors cou­pled with faster wire­less tech­nolo­gies means ev­ery­thing is com­ing on­line. And if it’s on­line, you can be sure there’s an app for it, from your TV and your wash­ing machin

HWM (Singapore) - - Contents - Text by HWM Team Il­lus­tra­tion by Chua Zong-Wei Art Di­rec­tion by Ken Koh

MI­CROSOFT XBOX ONE

The Xbox One is more than just a gam­ing con­sole, it’s an en­tire en­ter­tain­ment sys­tem more than wor­thy of be­ing the cen­ter­piece of your liv­ing room. Mi­crosoft’s SmartGlass app lets you use your phone or tablet as a re­mote to se­lect a game, video or mu­sic to play. The Xbox One can also quickly jump be­tween a TV pro­gramme, a movie or a game; you can even split the screen to do both si­mul­ta­ne­ously. Of course, as a smart de­vice, the Xbox One also comes loaded with use­ful apps, like Twitch, Net­flix and YouTube.

UA55F9000AK 55” SE­RIES 9 UHD LED TV

Smart TVs have been evolv­ing for the past cou­ple of years and Sam­sung’s lat­est 4K res­o­lu­tion LED UHD Smart TVs pro­vide more fea­tures than ever. This Sam­sung se­ries 9 UA55F9000AK UHD LED TV comes with voice con­trol, mean­ing you won’t ever need to pick up the re­mote to turn on the TV, change chan­nels or ac­cess apps, or if you’re suf­fer­ing from a sore throat, you can try air ges­ture con­trols in­stead, sim­ply per­form the ap­pro­pri­ate ges­ture with to change chan­nels, stop a video or ad­just the vol­ume. Sam­sung has also in­tro­duced a new re­mote con­trol for its 2014 Smart TVs, which lets you se­lect items on-screen by point­ing at them.

BELKIN WEMO LIGHT SWITCH

The WeMo light switch is one of the smartest light switches around – you can con­trol the lights even when you’re not home. It re­places the stan­dard light switch you have, and can be con­trolled with An­droid or iOS de­vices and the free, user-friendly WeMo app.

It’s not only about killing the lights, or turn­ing them on re­motely, you can also sched­ule the tim­ings or spec­ify which lights to turn on af­ter dark. Pro­gram your liv­ing room lights to turn off at sun­set and turn on at sun­rise by en­ter­ing your city name.

IROBOT ROOMBA

Keep­ing your house clean and dust free is im­por­tant, but who has the time to vac­uum and dust? Spare yourself the trou­ble with iRobot’s Roomba ro­bot vac­uum cleaner.

This lit­tle ma­chine will clean your floors for you and, with its iA­dapt soft­ware and sen­sors, will en­sure that ev­ery sec­tion of your room gets a thor­ough clean­ing, in­clud­ing hard to reach ar­eas like un­der fur­ni­ture. It will even make mul­ti­ple passes over the same area if nec­es­sary. And once the job is done, the Roomba will re­turn to its dock­ing sta­tion and recharge it­self. You can set a sched­ule for your lit­tle helper so it will run like clock­work, or, for ex­am­ple, set it to only clean when you’re out of the house, en­sur­ing min­i­mal in­con­ve­nience.

AROS SMART WIN­DOW AIR CON­DI­TIONER

The Aros Smart Win­dow Air Con­di­tioner can be con­trolled, pro­grammed and mon­i­tored from your smart­phone and will learn your us­age pat­terns and ad­just its set­tings ac­cord­ingly. Paired with your smart­phone’s GPS, it will turn off when you’re not at home, and turn on when you’re near­ing home.

An app is also avail­able, which you can use to set up a budget for your monthly util­i­ties bill. The app can also make sug­ges­tions based on your budget and will pro­vide daily weather re­ports so you can pre­dict if you’ll need the air con on or not.

BELKIN CROCK-POT SLOW COOKER WITH WEMO

If you think you need to be in the kitchen to cook a meal, you couldn’t be more wrong. While Belkin’s Crock-Pot (i.e., a slow cooker) doesn’t look wildly dif­fer­ent from the tra­di­tional slow cook­ers you see else­where, it’s one of the few crock-pots with an in­ter­net con­nec­tion.

In­deed, by down­load­ing the free WeMo app and sync­ing it with the 6-quart Crock-Pot, you can have re­mote ac­cess (be it over over Wi-Fi or 3G/4G cel­lu­lar net­works) to all the cooker’s func­tions. You can change the cook­ing time, ad­just its tem­per­a­ture, mon­i­tor the cook­ing sta­tus, and even re­ceive no­ti­fi­ca­tions right on your smart­phone or tablet.

What about the days when you aren’t out and about? Don’t worry, the slow cooker can also be con­trolled man­u­ally from its il­lu­mi­nated LED dis­play.

IDE­VICES KITCHEN THER­MOME­TER

Need to keep an eye on the cook­ing tem­per­a­ture but can’t take your eyes off that lat­est drama se­ries on TV? Per­haps the iDe­vices Kitchen Ther­mome­ter can help. Con­nected via Blue­tooth Smart, sim­ply tell the ac­com­pa­ny­ing iDe­vices Con­nected app on iOS de­vice what you’re cook­ing (sup­port for An­droid is com­ing soon), insert the probe into the meat, and it will let you know when your food is ready.

The Kitchen Ther­mome­ter uses two AA bat­ter­ies that last up to 200 hours. Be­sides real-time tem­per­a­ture up­dates, the app is also pre­loaded with tools, like a recipe sec­tion and a dig­i­tal cook­ing timer for count­ing up or down.

When all’s said and done, sim­ply wrap the probes and store them mag­net­i­cally on the back of the unit, and dump it into the drawer un­til your next cook­ing ad­ven­ture.

LG SMART RE­FRIG­ER­A­TOR

LG’s most ad­vanced smart re­frig­er­a­tor to date has some­thing you don’t nor­mally find in­side a fridge: a wide-an­gle cam­era. By de­tect­ing the open­ing and clos­ing of the fridge’s door and cap­tur­ing snap­shots of the shelves, you can eas­ily see (through LG’s HomeChat mes­sag­ing ser­vice) what ex­actly needs to be re­plen­ished when you’re at the su­per­mar­ket.

With the built-in LCD panel or the LG Smart Re­frig­er­a­tor smart­phone app, there’s also no need to open the re­frig­er­a­tor’s door to check its con­tent when you’re back home. A Fresh­ness Tracker will even keep track of ex­pi­ra­tion dates, and rec­om­mend meal op­tions based on the in­gre­di­ents stored in­side.

Tak­ing the healthy liv­ing mes­sage a step fur­ther is a Health Man­ager fea­ture, which rec­om­mends recipes, as well as daily and weekly meal plans based on your per­sonal pro­file.

IKETTLE

Yes, the 1.8-liter, stain­less steel iKettle is a ket­tle, though it has noth­ing to do with Ap­ple. The ‘i’ in its name sim­ply im­plies that it can join your home’s Wi-Fi net­work, which is es­sen­tial for its magic to work.

The other re­quire­ment is an app, which is avail­able for both An­droid and iOS plat­forms. You can use it to pre-boil the ket­tle (be­cause you know, it’s a com­plete waste of time to hang around the kitchen just to wait for the wa­ter to boil), as well as se­lect dif­fer­ent tem­per­a­tures to suit dif­fer­ent brews.

Be­yond act­ing like a re­mote con­trol, the iKettle also tries to an­tic­i­pate your needs. For ex­am­ple, when you turn on your phone in the morn­ing or walk through the door at the end of the day (and your phone re­joins your home net­work), the app will pop up a mes­sage ask­ing if you’d like the ket­tle boiled.

SAM­SUNG WW9000 WASHER

The WW9000 is Sam­sung’s lat­est Wi-Fi-en­abled wash­ing ma­chine. Be­cause it’s able to con­nect to the in­ter­net, you can con­trol and mon­i­tor it re­motely through the Smart Washer app on your An­droid or iOS de­vice. You can ad­just wash set­tings (tem­per­a­ture, num­ber of spins, etc.), start or pause a cy­cle, as well as get sta­tus no­ti­fi­ca­tions.

Ex­pect­edly, the front­load­ing WW9000 is packed with so­phis­ti­cated wash­ing tech, like sen­sors that gather load in­for­ma­tion (size, de­gree of dirt and soiling, amount of wa­ter, de­ter­gent re­quired) to de­ter­mine the op­ti­mal wash cy­cle, tem­per­a­ture, time, rinse cy­cle, and spin speed.

Its color touch­screen of­fers pre-pro­grammed set­tings to tackle 12 com­mon stains like blood, co­coa, se­bum, oat­meal, tea, wine, tomato, pen­cil lead, mud, makeup, lip­stick, and grass. Wash­ing ma­chines have come a long way.

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