Roost smart 9V battery turns your dumb smoke alarms into connected ones

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The plethora of smart home devices at CES makes it clear that home automation is an idea whose time has finally come. It seems there’s almost no household device now that can’t be controlled by, or at least communicate with, an iPhone.

The only downside is the expense of having to replace your perfectly good dumb devices with smart versions. This is the problem the Roost Smart Battery set out to solve, a WiFi-enabled 9v battery allowing your existing smoke alarm to send alerts to your iPhone when it’s triggered, so you get alerted even if the alarm is at the other end of the house or you’re away from home …  Read more

Harman and Philips announce noise-cancelling headphones, drawing power from Lightning without batteries

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Harman JBL Reflect Aware left, Philips Fidelio NC1L right

Noise-cancelling headphones are great, but they do have one big drawback: noise-cancellation requires power, giving you yet another device to charge. Harman and Philips have each removed that pain-point, announcing noise-cancelling devices with a Lightning connector instead of a 3.5mm headphone jack, drawing their power from the iPhone, iPad or iPod touch.

The Harman JBL Reflect Aware are earphones aimed at sports use, allowing you to choose the level of noise-cancellation – handy for times when you are on the street and want to retain some awareness of things like traffic noise. They come in at a reasonably wallet-friendly $149. Harman has them at CES, but no word yet on availability …  Read more

The best iPad, iPhone + Mac accessories at the 2015 CES

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There are thousands of new Apple accessories at the 2015 CES – so many that it’s hard sometimes to separate what’s truly cool from everything else. Starting with HomeKit-integrated accessories, here’s our running list of the best new iPad, iPhone, and Mac products 9to5Mac has seen at the show. We updated this article on January 9, 2015 – the final day of CES – to include our last batch of top picks.

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The latest gadgets from CES 2015 to bring HomeKit automation and Siri integration to your setup

At WWDC 2014, Apple first announced HomeKit which it describes as a “framework in iOS 8 for communicating with and controlling connected accessories” around your home, and we’re starting to see the first HomeKit-enabled accessories announced. HomeKit is especially interesting as smart devices that use it can be controlled by Siri commands like “turn off the lights” or “lock the front door” and actions can even be grouped together. Below you’ll find our running list of the latest gadgets from CES 2015 to bring HomeKit automation and Siri integration to your home: Read more

August unveils $49 Connect accessory enabling Internet access to its Smart Lock

Smart lock maker August announced its latest device today at CES 2015 simply dubbed ‘Connect’. The August Connect is an WiFi-connected device that plugs into a power outlet in your home to provide the Bluetooth-connected August Smart Lock with a constant Internet connection. August says its latest accessory enables several new features for owners of its smart lock product… Read more

Incipio unveils new three new pieces of HomeKit-ready automation gear

Incipio Direct Wireless Smart Wall Outlet

Incipio today unveiled a new lineup of iOS- and HomeKit-compatible automation tools during the Consumer Electronics Show. The three new pieces of tech will be available in stores in Q2 2015.

The first two items on the list are very similar: the Direct Wireless Smart Outlet and the Direct Wireless Smart Power strip. Both provide users with the ability to activate and control electric devices from a smartphone using the upcoming Incipio Direct app.

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CES 2015: Avi-on shows sub-$60, next-gen smart home lighting solutions

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How often is merely showing up with a working lightbulb enough to attract a crowd? At a dimly-lit event held tonight by the Bluetooth SIG ahead of the 2015 CES, Avi-on demonstrated such modest magic using an early implementation of Bluetooth mesh wireless connectivity.

The company’s upcoming Bluetooth light switches ($30-$35), light dimmers ($40), and lightbulbs ($20) will be the backbone of an upcoming home lighting system with General Electric branding, and promise to eliminate the need for in-wall light switch wiring.

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CES 2015: Smart watches and fitness trackers everywhere: solar, Swarovski crystals, and more

While Apple is set to release its Watch sometime early this year, CES 2015 is already packed with smartwatches with a range of focuses including fitness, fashion, and utility. We already saw Withings show off its colorful and affordable Activité Pop smartwatch with 8 month battery life, and others including Misfit, Garmin, Magellan, First Alert and more also have something for your wrist to show off at the Consumer Electronics Show this year. Check out the latest below: Read more

Zagg announces iPhone 6 Speaker Case w/ detachable Bluetooth speaker & backup battery, more

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Zagg, the company behind many of our favorite Bluetooth keyboards and cases, today announced its latest creation, the ZAGG Speaker Case for iPhone 6 with detachable Bluetooth speaker. Not only that, but the case also packs in an 1800mAh backup battery, which the company says will get you approximately “8 hours of additional talk time, and can be shared with a friend.” Read more

Google Cast for audio is an AirPlay competitor for music streaming from Android, iOS & web

Google today announced Google Cast for audio, which the company says takes advantage of Chromecast tech to send audio to third-party hardware like speakers, A/V receivers, and sound bars. The feature will allow users to tap a “cast” button from within music and radio apps on Android, iOS and the web to stream audio to Google Cast enabled speakers. Read more

Belkin expanding WeMo smart home range with four new sensors, as BeeWi plans to compete

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Belkin has announced four new products for its WeMo home automation range, with a focus on home security. You won’t be able to get your hands on them for a while, though: they aren’t set to go on sale until the second half of the year.

All four new products are sensors, capable of sending alerts to the WeMo app and triggering other WeMo devices such as switches, plug sockets and lightbulbs …  Read more

Withings debuts Activité Pop smartwatch, brings an affordable splash of color to the original

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Withings announced its new Activité Pop smartwatch today during CES. While the original model will set you back $450, the new “Pop” version will only cost you $150. For that much lower price you’ll gain the same fitness-tracking functionality of the original, including compatibility with the Health Mate mobile app. Oh, and an eight-month battery.

A secondary hand on the face of the watch provides a simple way to quickly check how much of your daily exercise routine you’ve completed. The Activité Pop can measure many activities, from running to swimming, and even monitor your sleep cycle. It even has a silent, vibration-based alarm to help you wake up.

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