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Update Bricks Smart Lock, Prevents Guests From Entering Airbnb Homes

Tyler Lee August 15, 2017

A smart lock sounds like it would be a great idea. A lock that you can unlock using your phone, a lock that you can generate codes and give to guests like friends and family, it almost seems like smart locks are the way of the future, but recently a situation involving Airbnb homes and smart locks have hinted that maybe that future isn’t quite here yet.

In a report from TechCrunch, it seems that a small number of Airbnb guests/hosts were locked out of their homes due to a smart lock getting bricked following a bad update. The lock in question is made by Lockstate and is part of Airbnb’s Host Assist program, where it is a lock recommended by Airbnb because it lets hosts generate a one-time code that their guests can use for the duration of their stay.

However like we said, a bad update to the lock’s firmware ended up bricking the device and made it impossible to reconnect to the company’s servers, meaning that pushing an update to the lock to fix the problem would not be possible. Speaking to Threatpost, the company is asking customers to send their locks back to them for a replacement, and that they are offering them a year’s worth of free access to its portal service as part of their apology.

While it is true that any smart lock could have ended up being in Lockstate’s position, it does highlight some of the problems that comes with owning a smart lock, and that maybe at the end of the day, a good old fashioned lock and key might still be the best answer.

Update Bricks Smart Lock, Prevents Guests From Entering Airbnb Homes , original content from Ubergizmo. Read our Copyrights and terms of use.

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IKEA’s Smart Lights Are Now HomeKit Compatible

Tyler Lee August 10, 2017

Earlier this year Swedish furniture maker IKEA announced that they will be launching their own range of smart lighting systems, thus providing homeowners with the ability to equip their homes with smart lights that are relatively more affordable than what is available out there, and now it looks like the company’s smart lighting systems are compatible with Apple’s HomeKit.

IKEA had announced several months ago that they would be updating their system to make their smart lights HomeKit compatible, and it looks like they have. The update has been pushed to all existing hubs which means that you should technically be able to control the system using the Home app on your iOS devices.

To top it off, it seems that the update has also made IKEA’s smart lights compatible with Philips devices, so if you already own a Hue Bridge and want to purchase IKEA’s bulbs, they will work together and you can save money from having to purchase a separate hub. This isn’t IKEA’s first foray into creating smarter homes.

A couple of years ago the company started creating furniture that came with wireless chargers built into them, which we have to wonder if it will play nicely with the upcoming 2017 iPhones which are rumored to support wireless charging.

IKEA’s Smart Lights Are Now HomeKit Compatible , original content from Ubergizmo. Read our Copyrights and terms of use.

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SousVide Supreme Touch+ Makes Cooking More Hi-Tech

Tyler Lee August 1, 2017

The thing about more traditional methods of cooking is that for those who aren’t as experienced, it is very easy to overcook a nice piece of steak, or undercook a piece of fish. This is where sous vide comes in, where the idea is that by cooking food at a slow and constant temperature, it will allow you to reach the optimal doneness without worry about over or undercooking.

If you are considering giving sous vide cooking a try, you might be interested to learn that the SousVide Supreme Touch+ by Eades Appliance Technology has been launched on Kickstarter. For those who are familiar with the SousVide Supreme, this model is basically an upgrade over the previous model and will come with more hi-tech features, such as WiFi connectivity, an accompanying app, and will even work with digital assistants like Amazon’s Alexa.

While the previous models featured a black lid to cover the food while it is immersed in the water, the SousVide Supreme Touch+ will feature a clear top which means that you will be able to see your food while it cooks. We suppose that’s not really necessary but it is a nice touch for those who want it.

The SousVide Supreme Touch+ is not the first connected sous vide machine as there are others like the Anova and Joule that offer similar features, so at the end of the day it depends on your preferences and also the price, in which the SousVide Supreme Touch+ will retail at $599, but if you pledge your support now there will be an early bird price of $299 which makes it pretty affordable.

SousVide Supreme Touch+ Makes Cooking More Hi-Tech , original content from Ubergizmo. Read our Copyrights and terms of use.

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Specs For Apple’s HomePod Revealed In Firmware

Tyler Lee July 31, 2017

At WWDC 2017, it seemed that the rumors were true and that Apple was indeed planning to compete against the likes of Amazon and Google by releasing the HomePod, a Bluetooth speaker that comes with Siri installed in it that will allow users to interact with the digital assistant without necessarily requiring an iOS device.

Apart from Apple boasting that it would feature incredible sound, not much else is known about the HomePod, or at least until now where thanks to firmware released by Apple to developers, some addition nuggets of information about the speakers has been revealed. Posted on Twitter by Avery Magnotti, the amount of RAM the HomePod is packing has been revealed to be at 1GB, along with an A8 chipset which supposedly makes it more powerful than current smart speakers in the market today.

The LED display on top of the speakers is also revealed to have a very basic resolution of 272 x 340. This display is meant to show a multicolored waveform that turns on to let users know when Siri has been activated. However it has been suggested that this display could also be used to display other shapes for other purposes, although the full functionality has yet to be revealed.

The HomePod is currently scheduled for a release this coming December where it will be priced at $349.

Specs For Apple’s HomePod Revealed In Firmware , original content from Ubergizmo. Read our Copyrights and terms of use.

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iRobot’s CEO Says They Will Not Sell Your Roomba’s Mapping Data

Tyler Lee July 29, 2017

Recently the makers of the Roomba robotic vacuum cleaner have come under fire based on a quote that its company’s CEO made to Reuters, in which according to iRobot’s CEO Colin Angle, he seemed to suggest that the mapping data of your home collected by the Roomba could be sold to other companies.

Unsurprisingly given how privacy is taken extremely seriously, this was alarming news to Roomba owners and potential owners who might have been put off by the idea. However iRobot and Angle have since clarified their stance on the matter in a statement that was released to the folks at ZDNet.

The company basically stated that they will under no circumstances sell your data. The statement (in part) reads, “Information that is shared needs to be controlled by the customer and not as a data asset of a corporation to exploit. That is how data is handled by iRobot today. Customers have control over sharing it. I want to make very clear that this is how data will be handled in the future.”

iRobot also clarified that the report from Reuters was a misinterpretation of Angle’s comments, and that iRobot never had any conversations with companies about possibly selling the data that it has collected, so hopefully with this cleared up, Roomba owners can continue using their devices in peace.

iRobot’s CEO Says They Will Not Sell Your Roomba’s Mapping Data , original content from Ubergizmo. Read our Copyrights and terms of use.

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This Espresso Machine Made From Concrete Is All Kinds Of Sexy

Tyler Lee July 26, 2017

Gadgets made from concrete aren’t new. Are they practical? Given how heavy they are, the answer is usually no, but in terms of aesthetics, it’s hard to deny that there is a certain industrial/raw feel that you get from concrete that adds a ton of appeal, especially if that’s the look that you’re going for.

Now if you’re a coffee enthusiast, then you might be interested to learn about the AnZa espresso machine. This is put together by design company montaag and it is basically an espresso machine made out of concrete (there’s also a model made from white corian). While it does look pretty “raw”, know that it is pretty smart as it will have IoT connectivity, meaning that you’ll have remote control over it and it could play nicely with IoT platforms.

Unfortunately details about the AnZa machines are a bit sparse at the moment, but the company plans on launching them on Kickstarter come August, so those who are interested will be able to find out more then and also help back the project. The AnZa espresso machine is also expected to be launched in 2018, so if you’re looking for an appliance that will stand out, this could be it.

This Espresso Machine Made From Concrete Is All Kinds Of Sexy , original content from Ubergizmo. Read our Copyrights and terms of use.

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Yale Unveils New HomeKit Compatible ‘Assure Lock SL’ Smart Lock

Tyler Lee July 25, 2017

Yale is a company that has been dealing with locks for the home and office for decades. However with homes getting smarter, Yale has also decided to hop on board the IoT bandwagon by introducing smart locks that can be controlled using apps and through various IoT platforms such as Apple’s HomeKit.

Now if you are in the market for a new smart lock, Yale has announced its latest offering in the form of the Assure Lock SL. As you can see from the photo above, this is a deadbolt system which features a very minimal and sleek interface that relies on a capacitive touchscreen where users can enter their PIN in order to unlock the door.

The lock itself is priced at $169 and there is also the option to add support for platforms like ZigBee, Z-Wave, Samsung SmartThings, Wink, Alarm.com, Vera, and HomeKit. There will also be a network module available for an additional $49 that will store up to 250 PINs, 25 of which the lock can store.

Take note that this particular lock is a key-free lock, which means that it will be harder for thieves to try and get into your home. The only downside is that should the lock malfunction for whatever reason or if the battery dies, the only way to open the lock would be to apply a 9V battery to the terminals below the touchscreen as a backup power option, which makes it ever so slightly inconvenient.

Yale Unveils New HomeKit Compatible ‘Assure Lock SL’ Smart Lock , original content from Ubergizmo. Read our Copyrights and terms of use.

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UK Wants Smart Homes To Integrate With The Energy Grid

Tyler Lee July 24, 2017

The way a lot of home appliances work these days is that when you want it, you turn it on, and when you’re done, you turn it off. A light is a good example where you can turn it on and forget to turn it off, meaning that regardless of who is at home, the light will be on and wasting energy and racking up an expensive bill when the time comes.

However this is something that the UK government is hoping to avoid, and with our appliances starting to get smarter, they are looking at a future where smart homes will be connected to the country’s energy grid to help balance the supply and demand for energy. This means that when paired with smart appliances, it could alert users to when electricity is cheap and suggest that maybe now is a good time to use the washing machine/dryer.

Or it could inform users that they should turn off certain appliances as the grid is currently experiencing a bit of stress, so what they don’t need can be disabled temporarily. Of course this also means that manufacturers of such smart devices need to take these things into consideration, but it is a good idea and it is also a good start.

UK Wants Smart Homes To Integrate With The Energy Grid , original content from Ubergizmo. Read our Copyrights and terms of use.

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