Aqara smart home recently announced Aqara eu gateway, a zigbee hub for Aqara accessories compatible with Apple HomeKit technology.
Aqara eu gateway allows you to connect Aqara accessories beyond the iPhone or HomeKit hub by making them visible on the Wi-Fi network. Whether it’s about checking the humidity level in the basement or activating a garden sprinkler, Aqara eu gateway puts all Aqara accessories within reach. It supports up to 31 accessories and 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi networks.
Incredibly simple configuration
Aqara eu gateway can be positioned anywhere in your home. Once connected to a power outlet, it is ready to be added to the HomeKit. By using the camera on your iPhone and scaning the HomeKit configuration code, installation can be done in a few seconds. The Aqara application lists the zigbee accessories that are within range, assigns up to 31 of them to the gateway, and migrates all metadata to ensure that all Siri names, scenes and automation remain functional. To use more than 31 accessories, several gateways can work on the same network.
Best privacy protection in its class
Aqara accessories are designed to protect your personal data. HomeKit secure means that they work seamlessly, without an Internet connection, cloud or registration. All data collected is fully encrypted, stored locally and never analyzed, sold or used for advertising purposes. With Aqara, your data remains private. Even when you access your home remotely.
While working on the design of intelligent home support apartments, Vanessa focused on three priorities in order to secure these homes adapted to seniors.
Most seniors, and this is legitimate, want to live as long as possible in their own homes. However, with the aging process and the resulting loss of autonomy, it sometimes becomes dangerous to live alone… In this context, and in order to stay at home in complete safety, it is preferable to adapt your “little home”.
As Vanessa points out, “anticipating will make it possible to quickly avoid or detect two of the main risks: falling and undernutrition. However, the layout of the rooms in the house or the resulting financial costs do not always allow all the necessary work to be carried out. Thus, it is essential to prioritize the various developments.
And the specialist continues: “The first priority is the soil. To avoid the risk of falling, the most important thing, as soon as you enter the apartment and in all rooms, is to have no threshold or jump. In fact, and to make it simple, everything must be perfectly level. It is also necessary to favour more flexible floors (such as wood vs. tiles)”. Of course, it is also necessary to ban carpets, which greatly increase the risk of slipping…
The second priority is lighting. As we age, our eyesight declines and the elderly are often affected by cataracts. It is therefore advisable to install bulbs that illuminate 30% more than usual. On the other hand, it is important to connect pilot lights or a light path (simply connect to electrical outlets). It is very practical and reassuring when you have to get up at night.
Finally, the third priority concerns two warning systems: one for falling and the other for the risk of undernutrition. To prevent a loved one from falling, it must be noted that medallions or watches are not worn all day long; especially in high-risk areas (shower, bath…). Or they do not offer sufficient reach (garden, cellar, floor…) and are sometimes difficult to access in the event of an accident (darkness, paralysis, coma…). On the other hand, it is necessary to favour the new detectors with automatic image analysers (therefore without the intervention of the senior) and non-intrusive (without sending an image to a third person) which will perfectly secure an elderly person living alone.
To prevent the risk, the installation of a smart door window sensor on the refrigerator door alerts relatives if the refrigerator is not open. The same applies to the sensors for switching on and off electric hobs in the kitchen. These three installations are really the “first steps” of home support, but there are many other equipment to make daily life easier: toilet booster seats, electric curtains and shutters, hearing loop, flashing bell…
In the last few years I have tested some smart home hardware here. Tons of sensors, sockets and switches. Now I took a look at the Wall Plug from Fibaro, which can be connected to Amazon Alexa, but also to Apple HomeKit. At home I’m using a mix of the two things, which is also due to the fact that I’m a blogger. My Hue lighting is receptive to commands from an Amazon echo or the HomePod via the Bridge anyway. Other hardware that isn’t HomeKit-compatible at the factory can be got in for example via the Aqara hub, which I also use, and an instance of Homebridge, which runs on my Synology NAS.
The Fibaro Wall Plug runs without any contortions and can be integrated directly into HomeKit. What speaks for it? I think it’s very compact – and if you really need the space, it’s worth something. Many smart sockets are quite a mess, you can’t say that of the Fibaro solution. I’ll skip the integration into a smart system, that’s self-explanatory for the users. Interesting: Many HomeKit cans rely purely on Bluetooth, Fibaro uses WLAN (2.4 GHz) and Bluetooth Low Energy for its Z-Wave solution.
The Fibaro Wall Plug can do more than blunt switching on and off, but here you always have to see what you need and what you are willing to spend. Personally I find most HomeKit-certified hardware in Germany sack expensive – an Eve socket costs 50 Euro and at Fibaro you want 65 Euro. Sixty-five. Yes, the range is good and the socket is nice and small – but how do you justify the price?
The socket is designed for loads of up to 2,300 watts and can visualise the current load using LEDs. I personally find it useless. And that can also be turned off in the app. Which brings us to the app. An absolute usability and eye horror. I don’t know what the developers take for things, but they’re not good. Nevertheless you have to have a look at Apps, because firmware updates only run through them. And also many functions can only be done with the app.
Like sockets from Aqara, the Fibaro Wall Plug can measure and regulate consumption in the long run. This requires the Fibaro app. On a positive note, when you need the functions and create various rules, you rarely need the app. Otherwise you can use Apple Home app for switching. Or, if you like it a bit more complex, the one from Eve. It doesn’t allow you to see the consumption of Fibaro, but it is very powerful when it comes to managing HomeKit – I would almost say: one of the best manufacturer apps in this area.
At the end of the day, the Fibaro Wall Plug can be issued with a mixed certificate, depending on the application. On the plus side, for me, the compactness (diameter of 4.3 cm and almost 3 cm high), the range and the reaction time. For me, the visualization via the LEDs is useless – and the app should definitely get a new coat of paint.
Robotic lawn mowers conquer the gardens. But which one is the right one? The large lawn mower robot test overview has identified the best lawn robots in the main categories. The trend is towards stronger and smart robotic lawn mowers such as the new GARDENA smart SILENO life range or the new Worx Landroid M WR141E and Landroid M WR151E prove. With our recommendations for the best lawn mower robot with App operation, lawn edge mowing function, for large, medium and small lawns as well as lawn robots without boundary wire, the purchase of a lawn mower robot becomes a success. In addition, we offer an overview of favourable offers for the respective lawn mower robot recommendation and provide answers to burning questions on the subject of robotic lawn mowers in our Mähroboter FAQ. If you are about to make a purchase, you will find valuable tips in our lawn mower robot purchase advice.
GARDENA smart SILENO city Set – Price-performance recommendation
We recommend the GARDENA smart SILENO city Set as the best lawn mower robot in our comparison. The intelligent lawn mower robot has lawn areas of up to 500 square meters, which should be sufficient for most gardens, works reliably and ensures a beautiful lawn cut. The well-equipped lawn mower robot comes as a set with a gateway, can be conveniently operated via an app and can also be integrated into the Gardena smart system. This makes the GARDENA lawn robot very suitable for most applications.
Lawn mower robot with App control: Recommendation GARDENA smart SILENO city Set
With the GARDENA smart SILENO city Set, garden tool manufacturer GARDENA has landed a real hit. The lawn mower robot from the SILENO city series differs from the other intelligent robotic lawn mowers of the city series in several ways: It comes as a set with the GARDENA Gateway, which communicates with the GARDENA smart app (iOS|Android). The gateway, which is installed outdoors, ensures good communication coverage and simultaneously integrates GARDENA smart SILENO city Set into the GARDENA smart system, which can be used to operate other smart garden tools. For example, the mowing times can be coordinated with the irrigation times of the smart GARDENA irrigation system via an app. The concept is convincing and helps the lawn mower robot to make our recommendation.
The intelligent GARDENA smart SILENO city Set lawn mower also impresses with its excellent performance data. It maintains gardens with a working area of up to 500 square meters, is the quietest machine in our lawn mower robot comparison with 58 dB(A) and has a PIN code anti-theft device. In contrast to other devices, no rain sensor is integrated, so the GARDENA smart SILENO city Set continues to mow even in the rain, which doesn’t bother it, but pollutes the housing with grass cuttings. However, cleaning the lawn mower robot is also easy – it is sufficient to spray the lawn robot with the garden hose. One advantage of the App-supported robotic lawn mowers is that if, for example, you are at work and learn from the App that a storm is brewing at the location of the GARDENA Gateway, the lawn mower robot can be ordered to the charging station. In conjunction with a lawn mower robot garage, the device is then in good hands.
The Worx Landroid SO500i is an affordable model that compares well with the GARDENA smart SILENO city set. With an RRP of just under 750 euros, it undercuts the GARDENA model by 350 euros. The intelligent lawnmower robot is also designed for work surfaces of up to 500 square meters and has app control. However, the app is not connected via its own gateway, but via WLAN. In such a case, it is advisable to check the WLAN coverage at home with the smartphone in the garden. If the lawn mower robot moves away from the radio coverage, the user has to wait until the random mowing tracks bring the Worx Landroid SO500i back into reach. As the only model in our lawn mower robot comparison, the intelligent lawn mower robot of the Chinese gardening tool professional offers a lawn edge mowing function. Worx has attached the mower to the side so that the blades can cut close to the edge of the lawn. By pressing the Home button, the Worx Landroid SO500i (WR105SI) is instructed, for example, to mow only along the edge of the lawn. However, the lateral mounting of the mower also reduces the safety area to the blades.
A negative feature of the Worx Landroid is the missing PIN code anti-theft device that the GARDENA has. In addition, the Worx Landroid SO500i has no display on the device, programming is done exclusively via App. Since the lawn mower robot is delivered pre-programmed, it can be operated out-of-the-box – without an app, however, the user cannot make any subsequent changes. The Worx lawn mower robot is equipped with a rain sensor as it does not mow in the rain and then withdraws to the charging station. Those who value well-kept lawn edges and are looking for an inexpensive app-controlled lawn mower robot for gardens up to 500 square meters will find the Worx Landroid SO500i, a well-equipped lawn mower robot that is, however, somewhat sensitive and lacks display device operation on the machine. Apart from the lawn edge function, the GARDENA smart SILENO city Set leaves a better impression.
Most robotic lawn mowers work with a boundary wire – this means that a cable must be laid around the working area of the lawn mower robot before it can be put into operation, which acts as a fence. Those who do not like this can use the Wiper ECO Blitz 2.0 lawn mower robot, our recommendation as the best lawn mower robot without boundary wire. Since the lawn mower robot cannot orient itself on a low-voltage boundary wire here, the Wiper ECO Blitz 2.0 uses six sensors for grass detection. In practice, this means that the wiper reverses as soon as it encounters an untreated area wider than 10 centimeters. These include, for example, floor slabs, tiles or mulch strips. Another orientation feature are obstacles such as garden fences, house walls or trees. Shock sensors allow the wiper to turn when it collides with an obstacle. This means that even with robotic lawn mowers without boundary fences such as the Wiper ECO Blitz 2.0, it is necessary to make the garden suitable for robotic lawn mowers. To be on the safe side – for example, if a pool is installed in the garden – we recommend installing small decorative fences or palisades as natural “bumpers” around the areas that the lawn mower robot is to drive around.
The Wiper ECO Blitz 2.0 is particularly suitable for less complex gardens, i.e. lawns without many bottlenecks or obstacles. When fully charged, the lawn mower robot, which does not need a boundary wire, mows autonomously. As with all other robotic lawn mowers, the mowing paths are selected at random in the overview. A lamp on the top provides information about the battery status. If this is weak or empty, the robot simply stops and has to be carried to the mains connection and recharged – a shortcoming, because this means that you always have to look for the battery charge level of the Wiper ECO Blitz 2.0, then carry it to its power supply unit if necessary, and after recharging it has to be left in the garden again. Here, robotic lawn mowers with boundary wire automatically make their way to their charging station and charge themselves automatically. The Wiper ECO Blitz 2.0 therefore needs more attention, but does its job reliably and under optimum conditions creates gradients of up to 50 percent, a top value among all the intelligent lawnmower robots presented in our comparison. With an RRP of just under 1,550 euros and a recommended working surface of 400 square meters, the Wiper is around 500 euros above our favourite GARDENA smart Sileno city set. If you don’t dare to lay a boundary wire yourself, you might consider using a service provider for this money. Unfortunately, as with the WORX lawn mower robot, the Wiper BLITZ 2.0 also lacks PIN code protection, so that thieves can use the device on foreign lawn terrain.
Lawn mower robot for large gardens: recommendation Viking iMow 632 / C
If you own a large garden with 1,000 square meters and more, you can breathe a sigh of relief and hand over the lawn mowing to the Viking iMow 632 / C lawn mower robot. The alternative of hiring a gardener or maintaining one or more goats is therefore a thing of the past. The Viking iMow 632 / C lawn mower robot is one of those robotic lawn mowers that work with a boundary wire. The long-distance mower creates working areas of up to 3,000 square meters, achieving optimum results with a working area of up to 1,000 square meters. One of the reasons for this is that robotic lawn mowers have to repeatedly return to their charging stations to recharge the battery when working on large areas. Our lawn mower robot recommendation for large gardens copes with gradients of up to 45 percent without it tipping over or immediately approaching the mountain without getting any further. Thanks to this good climbing ability, the Viking is also suitable for slopes. The height of the lawn cut can be varied from 20 to 60 mm. As a rule, you start with the highest cutting height and then reduce it downwards – if desired. The lawn mower robot then continuously prunes the stalks back to the set cutting height. The fine pruning sinks to the ground and becomes natural lawn mulch. Like all other robotic lawn mowers, the Viking iMow Mi 632 / C works out the mowing pattern at random.
The Viking iMow 632 / C feels at home in large gardens. It mows in any weather and has a rain sensor that can be activated and deactivated. The Viking iMow 632 / C model is operated via a removable display, which is very convenient and eliminates the need for the lawn mower robot to kneel down to program the mowing times. With the Viking iMow 632 C model variant, a smartphone app is also available. Just like the HUSQVARNA, the Viking also has GPS. This allows the lawnmower robot to be located via smartphone, which serves as an anti-theft device and is also fun if you simply want to see where the Viking is mowing in the garden. On the other hand, the Viking iMow 632 C uses its GPS system for zone management. This allows up to four mowing zones to be defined, on which the Viking then places mowing centers as desired.
Lawn mower robot with GPS: recommendation HUSQVARNA AUTOMOWER 450X
The HUSQVARNA AUTOMOWER 450X is the top model in HUSQVARNA’s X Series and is aimed at owners of large gardens and meadows of up to 5,000 square meters – one reason why the device has GPS supported navigation. In addition, the built-in GPS also provides tracking in the event of theft. Another special feature of the GPS lawn mower robot is that it is the only intelligent lawn mower in the best comparison to have an ultrasonic sensor for object recognition. It therefore does not have to hit an obstacle to change its direction of mowing, even though collision sensors are also on board the GPS lawn mower robot. The lawn mower robot therefore leaves nothing to be desired in terms of equipment.
The GPS module records the working area inside the boundary wire. This means that the lawn mower robot can use GPS to record exactly which areas it has already mowed and adapt its mowing pattern accordingly. As a result, the HUSQVARNA AUTOMOWER 450X provides the user with a perfect lawn cut that leaves virtually nothing to be desired. Using the AUTOMOWER CONNECT equipment, the owner can also control the lawn mower robot with GPS via a smartphone app and thus instruct it to stop, start or park. Together with the GPS module, the owner can also find out where the HUSQVARNA AUTOMOWER 450X is at any time in the event of a theft.
Test overview of robotic lawn mowers
The purchase of a lawn mower robot needs to be well considered in advance, because the purchase is always a small investment. The intelligent lawnmower robots in our comparison start with recommended retail prices from 750 dollars. Dealers sell the machines at much lower prices. We have considered the following criteria for you in our comparison:
Lawn cut pattern: Does the lawn mower robot mow the lawn evenly, or are mowing paths visible on the lawn? The robotic lawn mowers in our comparison all draw their mowing tracks at random, which is why they all deliver a very good result.
Garden size: The available lawn mower robot models are designed for different garden sizes. Generally, a distinction is made between robotic lawn mowers for small gardens up to 500 square meters and robotic lawn mowers for large gardens up to 1,000 square meters. We recommend the GARDENA smart SILENO city for small gardens and the Viking iMow 632 for large gardens.
App control: Although robotic lawn mowers work autonomously, control via an app is more convenient when it comes to programming mowing times, for example. Without an app, this usually has to be done directly on the display of the lawn mower robot. The GARDENA smart SILENO city is the best lawn mower robot with App control in comparison.
Lawn edge mowing function: As the mower unit is usually located in the middle of the lawn mower robot, blades of grass at the edge of the working area generally remain unmown and have to be cut by hand afterwards. The Worx Landroid SO500i lawn mower robot presented by us is the only one that offers a lawn edge function here.
Boundary wire: Most robotic lawn mowers work with a boundary wire that defines the working area of the lawn mower robot like a fence. With the exception of HUSQVARNA, all manufacturers provide sufficient installation material. Installation is not difficult, but involves a one-off effort: A cable must be pulled around the lawn and tapped with pegs into the lawn. robotic lawn mowers without boundary wire are based on traditional “delimiters” such as fences or tiles. Preparations are also necessary for these robotic lawn mowers, such as the attachment of decorative palisades as stoppers. The editorial board recommends the Wiper ECO Blitz 2.0 for robotic lawn mowers without boundary wire.
Price: The robotic lawn mowers from our comparison cost between 750 and 4,100 dollars. Our recommended lawn mower robot, the GARDENA smart SILENO city, costs around 900 dollars. Only the Worx Landroid SO500i is cheaper.
The Spanish brand Energy Sistem, has presented three intelligent loudspeakers that have the integration of the Amazon Alexa assistant totally in Spanish. We are talking about the new Energy Smart Speaker 3 Talk, Energy Smart Speaker 5 Home and Energy Smart Speaker 7 Tower, which have Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Jack output of 3.5mm and all the virtues of Alexa intelligent assistant based on the cloud.
In this way, Energy Sistem has become the first Spanish company to certify Alexa products, which is why it’s worth knowing the Energy Smart Speaker product line, and that’s exactly what we’ll do next.
Energy Smart Speaker 3 Talk
This is the reference product of its family of devices, which comes equipped with Alexa with a Far-Field and Near-Field sound system thanks to its two omnidirectional microphones. It also has Wi-Fi connection to create a Multi-room system and other connectivities such as Bluetooth 4.1 and Audio Jack 3.5mm.
Going into detail, has a minimalist and elegant design that will fit into any environment, it has a power of 5W and offers an autonomy of up to 6 hours with its 2200mAh battery. It can be connected via Wi-Fi with any device in its series, as well as is compatible with the Energy Multi-room Portable Wi-Fi and Energy Multi-room Tower Wi-Fi to create a system that covers the entire home.
Thanks to the Alexa wizard you will be able to make instant online queries, play music, control your home’s IoT devices, make use of third party skills and much more using only your voice.
Energy Smart Speaker 5 Home
This is a larger loudspeaker that serves as the hub of the Multi-room system. It is equipped with 16W of power and a 2.0 stereo sound system. It consists of two 8W full range speakers and offers the same connectivity options as the previous model.
However, it is not powered by a battery, so it depends on being plugged into the outlet at all times. It also has a wooden speaker with a modern and elegant design, which is complemented by an LED status indicator. Like all products in its series, Amazon Alexa is the center of experience.
Energy Smart Speaker 7 Tower
This 40W power sound tower offers a 2.0 stereo sound system consisting of two full range 20W loudspeakers each. This tower maintains the connectivity options mentioned above and Alexa compatibility, but has the addition of an external memory decoder Micro-SD and USB up to 128GB capacity to play music from these media.
Additionally, a remote control with a range of up to 10 meters is included with his purchase.
The Yeelight series has become a household name. Here is another member of the series: the Yeelight Candela, the smart candlelight or gas lamp light. With its warm and cosy colour temperature of 1800K it is exactly the right Smarthome Gadget for the coming cold days.
Basically, the Xiaomi Yeelight Candela is a simple electronic gas lamp light. That’s the way it seems. But in fact this lamp has nothing to do with the cheap flickering electronic candlesticks, which are now used more and more often.
Packaging & scope of delivery
We ordered the Yeelight Candela from the EU warehouse of GearBest and just three days later it was on my desk. Compared to many other China gadgets, our version of the Yeelight Candela seems to be designed for the global market. All labels and instructions on the packaging are in English.
The box itself contains, beside the lamp itself, only a Micro-USB charging cable and a manual in English. Although the Yeelight Candela is equipped with a CE mark, a corresponding charging adapter is not included.
Processing & Design
As usual with other Yeelight products, the Candela is flawlessly finished, there are no material or manufacturing defects. – very good! With a height of 19.5 cm and a diameter of only 7.2 cm, the lamp is slightly smaller and much narrower than the Yeelight bedside lamp, which we have already tested.
The base of the lamp is about 5 cm high and covered with metal in a subtle gold tone. Accordingly, the transparent acrylic dome is 14.5cm high. Unfortunately, it cannot be opened, a change of the built-in LED lamp is apparently not planned.
All in all, the design of the approximately 7 cm high “light stick”, with the metal grid optic, is reminiscent of a gas lamp, as you might know it from camping. In my opinion, the warm light imitates the glow of the rod very authentically. Otherwise the Yeelight Candela makes a good impression on me, at least in the area of workmanship and design there is nothing to complain about.
Yeelight Candela in the test
The Yeelight Candela can be controlled by simply rotating the dome. If you turn it clockwise, the lamp switches on at the darkest brightness. If you turn it further, the candela becomes brighter and brighter until the maximum brightness of 10 lumens is reached. By turning it counterclockwise, the smart lamp becomes darker again.
If the dome is first turned clockwise and then counterclockwise, the “candle mode” is activated. In this mode the LED lamp flickers, similar to a real candle. The light has a color temperature of 1800 Kelvin, which I like well in the test of the Yeelight Candela.
Especially in dark rooms it emits a warm and, in my opinion, pleasant light that invites you to crawl on the couch especially in autumn and winter. If you are too lazy to operate the lamp by turning it, you can also do so using the Yeelight app.
Connection via Bluetooth and Yeelight App
The Yeelight app, which we already know from other Smarthome gadgets like the Yeelight dessert lamp, the Yeelight incandescent lamp or the Yeelight LED strip, is available for Android and iOS. On the underside of the candela there is an on/off switch that also turns on the Bluetooth mode.
If the lamp is successfully connected to the smartphone, different modes can be selected via app. The only difference is the brightness of the lamp. In night mode, for example, the brightness is reduced to 10%, in dinner mode it is 100% brightness.
With the slider on the middle screenshot, the brightness is adjusted individually and can be saved under the star symbol as your own favorite. In addition, a timer function is implemented with which the lamp can be switched off according to plan. Unfortunately, the Yeelight Candela is not equipped with a WiFi module, so it cannot be integrated into your home Smarthome.
Battery and battery life
The Yeelight Candela is equipped with a 2100 mAh battery. This battery lasted about six hours in the test, at full brightness in Bluetooth mode. With lower brightness, the battery life of the lamp is correspondingly longer. But most of the energy is saved by deactivating Bluetooth. Thus, the Yeelight Candela achieves a battery life of approximately eight hours in the test. With a medium brightness, even a runtime of approximately 12 hours is feasible.
The recharging process took about three hours in the test. A red LED indicator on the bottom indicates that the battery is charging and goes out when charging is complete.
Apart from the price, which is quite steep with about 35€ per piece, I like the Yeelight Candela quite well. The LED lamp in gas lamp optic shines in a pleasantly warm light and is thanks to app control and some smart functions a fancy alternative to ordinary smart LED lamps.
It’s not as romantic as a real candle, but in my opinion it comes closest. Unfortunately, the Yeelight Candela is not equipped with a WiFi module and cannot be integrated into the home Smarthome network – a pity. But maybe a second version of the cosy lamp will come soon, like the Yeelight bedside lamp.
The system for your Gardena Smart Garden will soon be compatible with Apple HomeKit, so you can control it by voice with Siri.
Gardena has already announced the smart system for garden lovers in 2016 and has launched a number of devices on the market since then.
Gardena smart system appliances
Gardena Smart Power is a smart socket outlet, of course for outdoor use, which is splash-proof and should be able to withstand temperatures as low as -20°C. The maximum switching load is 3680 watts.
The Gardena Smart Sensor should measure the soil moisture of your garden, the light intensity and the outside temperature as well. The data can then, for example, be included in the irrigation control. The Smart Sensor is only powered by two normal 1.5 Volt AA batteries.
With the Irrigation Control you make your garden irrigation smart. With this irrigation control you can control up to six commercially available irrigation valves with 24 volts. Individual watering programs can be created for each valve.
The Smart Water Control is also intended for garden irrigation, with the difference that your garden hose becomes smarter. The garden hose, which is otherwise used for normal irrigation, can be individually controlled via this irrigation computer.
Thanks to the extensive accessories from Gardena or other manufacturers, it is also possible to distribute the hoses to the desired places in the garden.
Gardena & Apple HomeKit
According to Gardena, all Smart Garden devices mentioned above will be compatible with Apple HomeKit by the end of this quarter of 2019. Then it will be possible to control the devices not only with Siri via voice, but also via Apple’s own Home App.
Gardena also has good news for customers who have already purchased and used such devices. The integration of Apple HomeKit is done by software updates.
Apple has been allowing software authentication for some time now, which Gardena has now also used for its devices.
You might still be wondering, what about Gardena’s smart mowing robots? Unfortunately, for the time being, they remain outside. But that’s not Gardena’s fault, it’s the fact that Apple HomeKit simply doesn’t support profiles for mowing robots at the moment.
But from now on Gardena smart system also supports IFTTT. Via this third-party service platform, you can link the smart Gardena devices with all other IFTTT-compatible devices and services, including the SILENO mowing robot.
Ikea and Xiaomi have announced a strategic partnership, according to several press reports. The partnership will focus on the Smart Home segment.
Xiaomi is better known in this country as a suction robot manufacturer. The Roborock S50 suction robot is an example of the sophisticated and well-functioning technology behind it. By the way, the name Roborock stands for the manufacturer’s name, Xiaomi is the big investor behind it.
Of course, it remains to be seen what this partnership will (produce).
Alexa with Wake On LAN
Alexa is to support the so-called WOL (Wake On LAN) in the future. The WOL method can be used, for example, to wake up PC´s, smart TV´s, NAS devices and much more.
And since this is a digital language assistant, Alexa, it’s all possible with a voice command. In order for it to work across the board, however, the manufacturers must now get to it and implement this function in their devices.
On the Amazon Skill Developer page you can read that VIZIO, LG and Hisense are about to implement it into their TV sets, respectively want to roll out the Wake On LAN function via update in the next months.
Apple music on Alexa capable devices
Amazon and Apple are expanding their cooperation, now, according to Amazon, from 17 December this year Apple music will also be available via Alexa.
So Alexa will get an additional music service. The Apple fans should be especially happy about that, because there are certainly many who don’t use an Apple HomePod at home, but rely on Amazon Echo´s .
Arlo Ultra 4K – Smart Security Camera for 2019
Netgear has already announced a brand new surveillance camera for 2019, the Arlo Ultra 4K. The smart camera is supposed to be able to record the videos in 4K resolution and will be suitable for outdoor and indoor use.
As with the other Arlo cameras, a central unit is required for installation. The central unit also has a micro-SD card slot for the local storage of the videos.
The Netgear Arlo Ultra also has LED lighting to ensure good illumination at night.
In addition, the smart camera includes a one-year Arlo Smart Premier subscription.
Asus presented the Zenbo household robot at Computex. It should support you with all kinds of tasks and help you to control your Smart Home.
Asus describes his new development as a friendly household robot designed to provide you with support, entertainment and company. The Asus Zenbo can move independently and understands voice commands. It should help with video calls, social media, shopping or streaming movies and TV. Thanks to the camera he can also take pictures of you.
According to Asus, the robot is designed for all age groups, but offers special functions especially for seniors. As a home digital care assistant, it provides voice reminders of important events, for example. For example, it is intended to remind the elderly of doctor’s appointments or the taking of medication on its own.
Zenbo also serves as a home alarm for senior citizens and is designed to alert certain family members on their smartphones in emergency situations, such as a fall. If you receive an emergency message, you can remotely control the Asus robot and use the camera to see how the family member is doing.
The Home Assistant is also intended to be a playmate for your offspring. For example, a stereo sound system allows Zenbo to play children’s favorite songs and dance to music. He also reads stories with different voices stored in his library. Pictures are also displayed on the screen. If he is connected to the Smart Home, he can also control the room lighting to match the story. An interactive encyclopedia and educational games are designed to promote education.
In addition to lighting, Zenbo can control other smart home devices such as TV or air conditioning. In the kitchen, he can read out recipes aloud or act as a voice-controlled timer. Due to the camera, it is also suitable for home monitoring. Thanks to an SDK open to developers, the number of applications is expected to grow over time.
Asus has not yet announced when Zenbo will be on the market and how much it will cost. More information can be found on the Asus website. Update: The Zenbo will cost 599 dollars in the USA.
Like many other electronics companies, LG Electronics is preparing itself for the age of the smart home. The South Korean company has entered into a partnership with the Internet giant Google. As the company announced at Google’s developer conference I/O, a number of its home appliances will be compatible with Google Home and Google Assistant.
“Our partnership with Google shows how easy it is to make a home smart with user-friendly products. You certainly don’t have to have an academic degree in science to create your own smart home, because it’s easy and intuitive to use,” said Song Dae-hyun, president of LG Electronics Home Appliance & Air Solutions in a press release.
Types of devices LG has linked to Google Assistant and Home include washing machines and dryers, Signature range refrigerators and air cleaners, air conditioners and vacuum cleaner robots. By networking with the Internet, users of washing machines have an overview of the remaining life of the appliance. Or they can use a voice command via Google Assistant within the range of Google Home to control the room temperature and air quality in the home, etc. and so on.
LG’s smart home products first in the USA
For the time being, the partnership between LG and Google is limited to the USA. According to LG, the market launch of smart devices in other regions will take place at a later date. The conditions are brisk consumer demand in the United States and the spread of the necessary infrastructure. Accordingly, it is still open whether and when LG will offer its smart products in Germany.
Google is further expanding its smart home concept. At the developer conference I/O, the online giant announced that more and more manufacturers want to integrate the Google Assistant. LG is one of over 70 partners that Google already has in its pocket, including Philips, Logitech and HP.