The Internet of Things Made Simple

The Internet of Things is such a far-reaching phrase that it can be difficult to really put a finger on what it means in a practical sense. Good examples are the heart and soul of the IoT, to show where it is going and where it is today. This is especially important to the lay-person, who cares more about the final product than the technology needed to get to that point. Additionally, the lay-person is, in many cases, the beneficiary of the Internet of Things. Business and home owners, innovators and problem solvers make up the catalyst for growth in IoT technology, which is why it is crucial that product developers can explain the value of their product and the IoT in general.

 

DevEx put together a video explaining the Internet of Things and giving some great examples that we love. Check it out here: https://www.devex.com/news/devexplains-the-internet-of-things-89765

The HomeKit Climate

The smart home environment has progressed at a dramatic pace over the last few years. Apple, Google, and Amazon have all made significant contributions to the space by developing their platforms and giving the thumbs up to dozens of new devices. HomeKit specifically has shown a lot of growth. From what initially appeared to be an afterthought of Apple, HomeKit has developed into one of the big-leaguers in the smart home market.

In TechHive’s new piece on the state of Apple HomeKit; they describe the strengths and points of growth for this platform as well as the devices currently working with it.

Check out the full article here: http://www.techhive.com/article/3159652/home-tech/the-state-of-the-apple-homekit-market-apples-smart-home-ecosystem-has-yet-to-coalesce.html

ConnectSense to Showcase HomeKit Sensors, Bluetooth Extender and Smart Outlet at CES 2017

NAPERVILLE, Ill. — (December 20, 2016) — ConnectSense, a leading manufacturer of home automation products, will showcase a new Bluetooth Extender in addition to the ConnectSense Smart Outlet and the company’s line of Bluetooth wireless sensors at CES 2017 Tech West at the Sands Expo Convention Center, Booth 40357, as part of the Smart Home Marketplace.

The new ConnectSense Bluetooth Extender enables users to access Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) sensors and devices from outside the home. Without the Extender, a wireless phone or other device is needed to connect to the Internet.

The Bluetooth Extender can be configured to work with Apple HomeKit or the ConnectSense Cloud. Utilizing HomeKit, users can securely control all their HomeKit accessories from an iOS device and the new Home app from Apple. Using the Bluetooth Extender as a hub, users can control smart devices from just about anywhere. By connecting to the ConnectSense Cloud, sensor data is saved to the Cloud and notifications are relayed to a smart phone or email.

The ConnectSense Bluetooth Extender can be used with the new ConnectSense BLE enabled sensors for temperature/humidity and water detection. The ConnectSense Bluetooth Temperature & Humidity Sensor provides accurate and reliable data for sensitive areas of the home, including wine cellars, collection rooms, greenhouses and more. It works in harmony with HomeKit-enabled thermostats to regulate temperature in areas where a thermostat isn’t present. The ConnectSense Bluetooth Water Sensor detects the presence of water before it causes costly damage. It is perfect for detecting leaks in basements and laundry rooms, as well as monitoring plumbing and refrigeration lines.

Both sensors operate using Bluetooth Low Energy and require only two AAA batteries for long periods of operation. In addition, all ConnectSense products integrate with the new Home app included in iOS 10, which makes it easy to set up and control all smart devices in one app. Apple HomeKit allows users to monitor these devices easily and securely using Siri on their iPhone, iPad or iPod touch or Apple Watch. By integrating with the HomeKit ecosystem, users can easily create integrated scenes and rules to automate devices, regardless of manufacturer, with just a few simple steps. For example, users can set rules to automatically turn on lights or other devices when water is found, and users can ask Siri to gather information about the sensors, such as asking about the temperature.

ConnectSense also will display its Smart Outlet ($59.95), which enable users to easily control and monitor their everyday plug-in devices, such as lights, fans and televisions. The intuitive design of the Smart Outlet fits over any existing standard North American electrical outlet and features Apple HomeKit technology. After installing the ConnectSense Smart Outlet, users can configure it using the ConnectSense app available in the App Store and easily create integrated scenes and rules for all HomeKit devices.

With detailed power monitoring in the app, users have insight into the power consumption of devices plugged into the Smart Outlet, as well as how long devices have been turned on. Unique to the ConnectSense app is the ability to create rules based on power usage. For example, a homeowner can set a rule that says if the television has been on for three hours, turn it off. For safety, rules can be set to turn off hot or potentially dangerous devices, such as flat irons, if they have been left on for an extended period of time.

ConnectSense products are available at connectsense.com and on amazon.com.

About ConnectSense
ConnectSense develops and manufactures home automation products, including the ConnectSense Smart Outlet and a line of wireless sensors that monitor changes in your environment then notifies you by email or text when something goes awry. ConnectSense can be found at www.connectsense.com and on Twitter at @ConnectSense.

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Note to media: Additional information, photos and links to videos about ConnectSense products are available at https://gridconnect.box.com/v/CES2017

ConnectSense Introduces Power Monitoring to Smart Outlet

Smart Outlet Price Dropped to $59.95

NAPERVILLE, Ill. — (October 20, 2016) — ConnectSense, a developer and manufacturer of home automation products, announced the addition of power monitoring to its ConnectSense Smart Outlet and the ConnectSense app.

With the ConnectSense app, users can easily create integrated scenes and rules for the Smart Outlet and other home automation devices regardless of manufacturer, with just a few simple steps. Users can control their smart devices with the touch of a button or using Siri voice control.

With detailed power monitoring, users have insight into the power consumption of devices plugged into the Smart Outlet, as well as how long devices have been turned on. This allows users to adopt more energy efficient habits or to replace energy-hogging devices or appliances with more efficient choices.

Unique to the ConnectSense app is the ability to create rules based on power usage. For example, a homeowner can set a rule that says if the television has been on for three hours, turn it off. Also, for safety, rules can be set to turn off hot or potentially dangerous devices, such as flat irons, if they have been left on for an extended period of time.

More complex scenarios also can be set up to automate environments. For example, in a home theater, a homeowner can set a rule that says when the projector turns on, the room lights dim.

“We are happy to provide our customers a way to monitor their energy usage, and give them more control over their devices,” said Adam Justice, founder of ConnectSense. “Among the reasons to automate a home is to make it more energy efficient and to save money, and power monitoring will be an important tool in this effort.”

The ConnectSense power monitoring feature is available via firmware update free to existing customers in the current ConnectSense app.

ConnectSense also announced it is dropping the price of its ConnectSense Smart Outlet to $59.95. The Smart Outlet features two Internet-connected electrical sockets that enable users to control devices plugged into them using Siri via their iPhone, iPad, iPod touch or Apple Watch. 

About ConnectSense
ConnectSense develops and manufactures home automation products, including the ConnectsSense Smart Outlet and a line of wireless sensors that monitor changes in your environment then notifies you by email or text when something goes awry. ConnectSense can be found at www.connectsense.com and on Twitter at @ConnectSense.

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For information contact:

Linda Muskin, 847-432-7300
lmuskin@teamclarus.com

Mara Conklin, 847-816-9411
mconklin@teamclarus.com

Smart Home Tech: Revolutionizing Assisted Living

It has always been extremely difficult for the elderly and disabled to live on their own as they often require some sort of assistance to take adequate care of themselves. Smart Home technology and connected appliances are making it much easier for these groups of people to be much more independent. Being able to control devices with voice commands or with a smart phone allows for easy access for those who have difficulty moving around.

Implementing smart technology within the homes of the elderly and disabled will enable them to be able to perform tasks that would ordinarily be difficult. Having smart lights or fans will enable people in wheelchairs, who can’t reach the light switch or have difficulty navigating their home, to have remote control over their devices. If an elderly woman has difficulty moving, she can use a smart thermostat to adjust the temperature from a mobile device. In the cases where mobility is an issue, another great tool could be a smart lock/doorbell. This would allow for individuals to see who is at their door and unlock it within a matter of seconds, without ever having to get up and check the door.

There is a clear potential to transform the lives of those who would ordinarily struggle to live on their own. Even though this technology provides people with easy and accessible control over their homes, it is often too expensive for the elderly and disabled to afford. In an article focused on the benefits of smart homes for the disabled, author Shalene Gupta writes, “Most companies that make smart home products don’t specifically market them to people with disabilities” (Fortune). This is a very important piece of information because the price and uses of this innovate technology are typically not targeted to this audience.

Imagine what would happen if smart home technology was actually created with the elderly and disabled in mind. This technology is already having a profound impact within that community, and it isn’t even designed to be optimized for that demographic. Some companies have begun to develop this technology with this target audience in mind, which will give people so much more control of their homes via remote/voice control. There is already a large assortment of smart devices and appliances available such as lights, thermostats, security systems, washers/dryers, coffee makers, and many more. With appliance automation (as seen in Apple HomeKit), users won’t even have to do anything or be responsible for remembering to do something. The disabled and elderly will be provided with more freedom and independence thanks to the power of the Internet of Things.