Home Networking, Home Automation

The Needs of the 2013 Connected Home

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The Needs of the 2013 Connected Home

As customers use more connected devices, home networks must provide steady internet connections, Gartner reports-- providing robust, reliable and fast fixed broadband access.

“Until 3 or 4 years ago consumers primarily accessed the Internet through PCs and laptops but at the beginning of 2013 the picture is very different,” the analyst says. “Consumers use multiple screens to perform various activities that require both fixed and mobile Internet connectivity... Consumers are screen-agnostic-— they will use whichever screen is convenient, as long as it is ‘connected.’”

According to Gartner in 2013 the average home houses 10 "potentially internet-enabled devices" used not only for video sharing and viewing but also home protection, monitoring, security, fitness and health monitoring. The analyst estimates annual WW wifi-only home device (mostly tablets) growth will reach 60 million units until 2016, while global mobile device CAGR (not counting smartphones on a mobile data plan) should total over 8% for the same period.

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App-Controllable Lighting, Via Socket

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App-Controllable Lighting, Via Socket

App-controllable light bulbs appear to be the next bright thing. Philips sells one, and so does Insteon. Now Spark Devices suggests an alternative system on Kickstarter-- the Spark Socket.

The Spark Socket is a device customers screw into a regular socket, before screwing in any dimmable bulb. It allows users to control lighting (on, off, dimming) via wifi connection and iOS/Android apps, without Continue reading...

Philips Take on App-Controllable Lighting

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Philips Take on App-Controllable Lighting

Philips enters the app-controlled lighting arena with the Hue-- an LED lightbulb with brightness and colour settings controllable via either PC or smartphones.

Each Hue bulb carries 11 LEDs in 3 different colours (red, lime, blue) providing up to 16 million colour combinations. Philips even claims Hue bulbs can even recreate the ultimate in light sources, incandescent lighting. Control comes through Continue reading...

And Yet the Trashcan Moves... Thanks to Kinect

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And Yet the Trashcan Moves... Thanks to Kinect

We've seen plenty of interesting Kinect hacks, but the "Smart Trashbox" might be the only one to find a home at our office-- a Kinect-powered automated waste bucket able to track and catch thrown bits of trash.

Created by Japanese modder FRP, the Smart Trashbox runs on a battery-powered wheeled base connected to an integrated circuit board. A Kinect sensor installed on the ceiling controls the trashcan, Continue reading...

HomeGrid Forum Launches G.hn Certification

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HomeGrid Forum Launches G.hn Certification

Computex 2012 hosted the HomeGrid Forum G.hn Certification program launch, where vendors could submit their networking products in order to achieve HomeGrid approval.

The HomeGrid Forum expects "at least" 6 vendors to submit products for C&I testing and certification in 2012, and forum members can access the full set of Certification documents.

The certification process covers interoperability, Continue reading...

A New Standard for Wireless Power

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A New Standard for Wireless Power

Look out Wireless Power Consortium, a wireless power alternative is in town-- the Alliance for Wireless Power (or A4WP), a new industry consortium announced at CTIA Wireless 2012.

A number of major vendors form A4WP, including Samsung, Qualcomm, Powermat, SK Telecom, Ever Win Industries, Gill Industries and Peiker Acustic. Their aim? Nothing less than "an industry-wide wireless power standard" allowing Continue reading...

Mobile World Congress Houses "Connected House"

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Mobile World Congress Houses

The GSMA presents the "Connected House" of the future at Mobile World Congress 2012, Barcelona-- a model home of the future where virtually everything runs on wireless connections, from health monitors to social networking.

Powering the house are technologies from AT&T, KT and Vodafone, together with partners Accenture, Airbiquity, AQ Corporation, Cisco, Ericsson, Garmin, Herit, Intel, KTH, Modacom, Continue reading...

Sony Develops Smart Electric Sockets

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Sony Develops Smart Electric Sockets

Sony believes one device out there still needs to evolve and become "smarter"-- the humble electric socket, which has hardly changed over the past 50 years.

The Wall Street Journal reports the company has a prototype "smart socket" using RFID and authentication technologies to track energy use by appliance, limit consumption by time, user or device and even block energy access to non-authorised plugs. Continue reading...

Can IEEE P1905 Unite Home Networks?

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Can IEEE P1905 Unite Home Networks?

IEEE is developing a standard called P1905, an abstraction layer allowing devices and services to work over any of the four main extent home networking technologies — HomePlug AV over power lines, MoCA over coaxial cable, Ethernet over Cat 5 twisted pair cable and Wi-Fi for wireless.

Paul Houzé of France Telecom-Orange is the Chair of IEEE P1905.1 Working Group, says “Creating a bridge between the Continue reading...

Connections and Home Management in a Gateway?

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Connections and Home Management in a Gateway?

QEES' Smartgate Gb wifi router not only acts as a NAT and firewall, but carries most-- if not all-- connection types under the sun.

These include WAN, LAN, wifi 802.11n, Bluetooth and a plug-in interface for Z-Wave and ZigBee connections.

It also carries  2x POTS for analogue telephony, 2x external USB ports and a VoIP client, while its embedded software turns it into a smart home controller-- c Continue reading...

Wireless Video: The Future's Big Market?

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Wireless Video: The Future's Big Market?

With customers eager to live life wire-free, it's no surprise analysts expect a market for wireless video devices to be big-- ABI Research expects 50m devices to ship into consumer markets by 2015.

ABI says that while there are a number of wireless video technology in the works-- including wifi (802.11n and 802.11ac) + video compression, UWB + video compression, WHDI, 60 GHz (WirelessHD and WiGig/WGA)-- Continue reading...

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