IoT

Anker: new speakers, USB-C chargers and other gadgets

Anker, a well-known Chinese brand specializing in the production of high-tech gadgets, a few days ago during an event in New York unveiled a number of new gadgets very interesting including speakers, USB-C chargers and even a wall projector.

One of the most interesting gadgets is the PowerPort Atom PD1, a wall charger with USB-C port (27 W), a perfect product for charging smartphones and devices such as consoles and MacBooks. In addition to this model, Anker has also launched the PowerPort Atom PD2 and PowerPort Atom PD3 variants, which differ only in power output (60 W and 100 W) and size.

 

Equally interesting is the Nebula Capsule II, a portable wall projector. It uses the operating system of Android TV and is characterized by the presence of Google Assistant, the integration of a USB-C port and a speaker 8 W. This projector offers a maximum resolution of 720p.

 

Model Zero and Model Zero+ are smart speakers. The first has only Bluetooth connectivity, the second also has WiFi connectivity in addition to integrating Google Assistant. Anker has also equipped these gadgets with a rechargeable battery and this makes them portable or otherwise placed in any environment, even away from an electrical outlet.

 

Finally, EufyCam is a surveillance camera with a rechargeable battery that lasts about a year. This product is able to recognize the face of people thanks to artificial intelligence and is capable of recording movies at 1080p.

What is the smart kitchen

The French are crazy about cooking. In any case, this was explained by the study "Les Français et la transmission culinaire" carried out by Ifop in 2015. We learned that 87% of the French people liked to cook. Among young people, the figure is also very high. But unlike previous generations, they have often not learned through family transmission. The Internet has become an essential source of information for them. In other words, the smart kitchen has everything it takes to seduce them with its help in making good dishes, automating certain parts or even suggesting menus according to the content of the refrigerator. For them, as for all others, the smart kitchen is above all a new way of looking at food. Healthier but also more entertaining and above all less constraining. We explain to you what the arrival of home automation kitchen allows.

 

What is a smart kitchen?
Smart cooking takes many forms, depending on the needs you may have and technological innovations. For the time being, these are often connected objects that operate independently of each other. Global systems are more an exception than the rule. Among the possible technologies are the fork that can help you eat better, the refrigerator that controls the food you have in stock, the oven that you can operate from your smartphone...

smart kitchen

Several logics therefore drive the desire to have a smart kitchen. It can be about wanting to eat healthier, stopping wasting food, learning to cook or simply buying time. Saving energy or controlling everything from your smartphone are also significant advantages. In short, the smart kitchen, like the connected objects in the rest of the house, often responds to the same logic: to be of service to us.

 

Facilitate, suggest, accompany, the keywords of smart cooking
Dozens of objects are available for your home automation kitchen. It is therefore difficult to make an exhaustive presentation. Here are three types of objects that are among the most accessible and frequent. If you want to know everything about the smart kitchen, go to our smart kitchen section.

 

Smart fridge. The first models arrived in the 2000s but they have been coming back in force recently. Their possibilities are numerous. The first idea is to let you know at a glance on the screen/tablet/smartphone, what is in your fridge and also the expiry dates. Some models also offer meal suggestions based on your habits and what you have in stock. Finally, it is sometimes possible to make a shopping list directly from there. It's more like a smart refrigerator than a connected one, they have a processor, RAM and a screen... A small computer in your kitchen in short. Discover our selection of connected fridges.

 

Oven connected. Whether you want to control it remotely, let it manage the cooking to make it perfect, the intelligent oven should soon become a must in the kitchen. We can also think in a similar register to the connected cooking plates which are more and more numerous on the market.

 

Coffee and teapot connected. What would you be without your coffee to start the day or a good tea to relax before going to sleep? Hard to imagine. And since preparing one of these two drinks can be an art, what could be better than relying on a connected machine? Ideal cooking according to the type of grain, perfect filtering... the options are already very numerous.

 

The future of home automation cooking

The future of the smart kitchen is partly already here. For example, the "Amazon Dash" buttons allow you to place an order with a simple click. Arrived in November in France, the "V1" of these buttons is already exceeded. Amazon launched dematerialized buttons in France at least in January to order any product. Previously, they were programmed for a particular product. We can therefore imagine that very quickly, we will be able to place our orders from our kitchen and be delivered at home by our supermarket or by a delivery. Practical, when an ingredient is missing to make a recipe.

 

We can also think of Grundig Vux. The "smart kitchen of the future" announced more than two years ago. Supposed to be released to the public at the end of 2016, it does not yet seem to be available. Its concept: use light projections to create control interfaces that can replace our traditional buttons.

 

It is clear that these two ideas are linked to the very concept of dematerialization. Remove physical elements to simplify actions and save time. It remains to be seen whether this is where the innovations of tomorrow will lie. At the beginning of 2015, Ikea had imagined the kitchen of 2025. Far from being a cold and impersonal place as might be feared in the age of automation, the brand offered a sensory and natural approach. Above all, if this space was ultra-connected, the human being was at the heart of it. This is enough to reassure all lovers of cooking.

Ring Stick Up Cams

It was only in the spring that the online retailer Amazon bought Ring, a company specializing in camera and security systems. Ring is a manufacturer of video doorbells such as the Doorbell 2 ring which in the long term should also be compatible with Apple's HomeKit protocol.

 

Ring has now announced the German market launch of Ring Stick Up Cams. The wired model, the "Ring Stick Up Cam Wired" can now be ordered for 199 Euro in black and white. The battery-operated "Ring Stick Up Cam Battery" will only be available at a later date.

 

Ring 1000

 

The new Stick Up Cams expand Ring's portfolio of home security solutions to include indoor and outdoor cameras with 1080p resolution and voice control via Alexa. Owners of compatible Alexa devices can access their Stick Up Cam Feed by calling (e.g. "Alexa, show us the living room camera").

 

The "Ring Stick Up Cam Battery" and "Stick Up Cam Wired" are equipped with motion detection, 1080p full HD resolution, night vision, intercom, a siren and a wide viewing angle and both cost 199 Euros.

 

The well-known Ring Protect subscriptions also apply to the Stick Up Cams.

The Stick Up Cam Wired is powered by a micro-USB power supply or Power over Ethernet (PoE), which guarantees customers a reliable Internet connection and constant power supply. When used indoors, the Ring Stick Up Cams bring the Ring of Safety inside and inform residents of any suspicious movement in the house. If you also want to secure the outside areas of your home, the Stick Up Cams can also be placed on the outside of the house. In this way, all activities on the property can be monitored and potential burglaries can be prevented in advance.

 

Features of the Stick Up Cam Wired
Flexible and personal installation indoors and outdoors
intercom function
1080p HD video
Siren
Night vision
Motion detection with user-definable motion zones
Weatherproof (according to IPX5)
Power over Ethernet (PoE) and Micro-USB

Turn off your PC from your smartphone

If you read our last article on how to turn off your PC with a Google Home, you probably wondered if it was possible to do it from your smartphone, without the voice?

Well, yes, it's possible! And not just that...

This article will require you to have seen "How to properly turn off your PC with a Google home" because we will reuse our tutorial but adapt it to those who do not have a Google Home and who want to do so with a simple button.

IFTTT configuration
First, it will be essential to follow the tutorial of this article with only one modification, the This step of IFTTT.

For those who don't have a Google Home for the This step, don't panic, that's the purpose of this article ! you just have to replace "Google Assistant" with "Button Widget".

Then click on "Connect" (also make sure you have installed the "IFTTT" application on your smartphone and are connected with the same account)

You will then have the "Button Press" proposal that will allow you to perform an action as soon as the button is pressed

And that's all! This will be the only change you need to make to turn off your PC with your smartphone. From this step, simply continue the tutorial in the "That" step to be able to properly shut down your PC

Smartphone configuration
On your phone, as mentioned above, you will need to have installed the IFTTT application

Once this is done, go to your Widgets on the Android interface. You should see "IFTTT" appear and you will have several widget options (Large button or classic button)

Select the appropriate widget and then select the corresponding applet. Now, the widget will be placed on your home screen and it will be possible to turn off your computer simply by pressing it!

Conclusion
More discreet but just as functional, you can now turn off your PC with a simple click, anywhere in the world! 

You will have understood it, it is possible to turn off your PC in many ways with this solution! Whether by email, Google home, twitter, HTTP request... It's up to you to choose what's right for you!

In this article we used the Boutton Widget, but all the available services allow us to achieve the same result.

It will be enough to adapt the "This" in IFTTT to create different scenarios! In addition, you can create several that will have the same impact, it allows you to control your PC in different ways depending on where you are. Practical, isn't it?

Disability and smart home: testimony and choice of Max, quadriplegic

For many people, the comfort offered by connected objects or home automation may seem futile and even reflects a certain laziness of modern society. For some people, however, this comfort is not just a little "extra", but a real relief: dependent people, with motor difficulties, or even seniors. Max, our audio specialist, is a person with reduced mobility, in a wheelchair for 27 years. This is called a "false" tetra, because it is closer to a paraplegic than a tetraplegic. We met while talking about home automation, as some devices can make his life much easier. But he is the one who speaks best about it, in an interview he gave for the us.

A testimony that I really find very interesting. Thanks to home automation, Max estimates that he is 90% autonomous. Proof that the connected house is not just to impress, it can really make life easier for many people. A very interesting testimony to listen to until the end!

 

Following this interview, many readers asked us for a little detail about what Max was using. Here is a selection of connected objects and home automation devices particularly adapted to disabled situations (but not only ;-)

 

Max living alone, an important part was devoted to security:

well placed cameras, both inside and out, allow him to keep an eye on what is happening around him at all times, without having to move around an alarm system has of course been set up: here Somfy Protect, which operates in conjunction with the Somfy Tahoma home automation system, which controls all the shutters, and which also operates with the connected lock of the same brand. Thus, when leaving his home, the lock locks, the alarm is activated, the shutters close. A connected thermostat is also planned to automatically switch the heating to eco mode.

 

The other practical point is lighting management. It is not very practical to have to go to each switch to light a lamp. Here, a large part of the installation consists of Philips Hue bulbs, accompanied by the brand's motion detectors. Thus the lighting is automatic.

The Xiaomi vacuum cleaner is also a great help, as it regularly cleans the floor.

 

The other devices are purely for comfort, and Max's "geek" side. This explains the presence of a Aqara home automation box, allowing many more possibilities to manage the multimedia part, or to communicate various devices between them, such as the connected coffee maker or the vacuum cleaner robot. Aqara also makes it possible to make all these devices available on Apple's "Home" application (Homekit), convenient to use thanks to its dashboard and favorites accessible with a simple slide of the finger, but also compatible with the Google assistant and its Google Home. The whole house then becomes voice controllable. In a situation of disability, it is at this level that the small revolution takes place!

 

Do as I do, make your life easier with a smart home. It is simple to use as long as you know what you want to do with it... And it is really a daily comfort!