At this point, we are all familiar with the Belkin WeMo line of products. They’ve been empowering consumers with smartphone-connected home automation products for some time now, from light switches to its newly released coffee maker.
While the WeMo line performs a number of simple tasks, it has not necessarily provided the level of open source capabilities that some consumers long for. Today, Belkin has taken a step in that direction with its new WeMo Maker.
This new product empowers DIYers to create their own custom WeMo setup, the possibilities truly seem endless.
From a software standpoint, everything about the Belkin WeMo Maker is still based out of the familiar iOS and Android app. The WeMo Maker can connect to most devices that are controlled by a low-voltage DC switch, commonly found in American homes. From there, it can be setup to control the functions of the device via the WeMo app.
It can consume data from a variety of different collection points, from the hardware side of things it can accept data from 5 volt sensors. This allows for the WeMo Maker to be manipulated based on a variety of sources, such as rain or moisture levels or temperature, motion and light as well. Additionally, it can call upon If This Then That (IFTTT) capability allowing for variety of things to happen based on other actions in the world.
Belkin provides a few examples of how IFTTT can be applied to the Maker, such as opening your doggie door to let your pet out when you close your e-mail at the end of the work day. IFTTT ultimately plays a huge role in the possibilities here, bridging the gap between multiple home automation devices. You could utilize your Nest Thermostat’s auto-away feature to control your WeMo Maker, making the blinds close when you leave your house.
Thanks to the WeMo Maker community, we can provide some pretty cool examples of what beta testers are already doing with this technology.
Beta tester Coojoe came up with a way for the WeMo Maker to control his outdoor blinds based on the time the sun sets each day. Utilizing IFTTT, the schedule automatically sets itself based on the data received from the service. He’s got a solar-based setup, which means his entire operation runs without needing any power from his home.
Another one of our favorite examples is the father and son team (user tterag2wemo) that created a launcher for his rockets via the WeMo app on his iPad. Utilizing a car battery and a DC converter, they are able to stand quite a distance away, simply pressing a button within the app to launch the rocket into the sky.
As the world of home automation continues to evolve, the technology community finds itself in a world of constant innovation. Although we are living in a period of the automation revolution that is flooded with products and possibilities, it is the ability to innovate that will ultimately bring out the highest quality solutions in the long run. Although it offers a wide range of customization, the skill set needed to fully get the most out of it may be intimidating to some consumers.
At a price point of $79.99, it is unclear how popular the WeMo Maker will be amongst the mainstream community. If you purchase directly from Belkin, you can use coupon code BELKINFALL20 to save $16 bringing the final price down to $63.99 shipped. The WeMo Maker is set to ship on November 18th.