We all know there are countless speakers, receivers, and flat panels at the CEDIA show, but what about the companies that live on the fringe of the industry? Here are a few seen on the floor breaking the typical mold and changing the way we look at this industry.
Sevenhugs sleep monitor Sevenhugs came to the show with two products. The HugOne is a Family Sleep Monitor that “”informs the entire family about their sleep behavior and helps improve it. There is no need to wear anything.” You place a sensor under the sheet, and it tracks temperature, humidity, air quality, as well as sleep cycles. Connect to a smart light, and it will wake you during your lighter sleep phases.
The Smart remote will be its second product coming soon. “The world’s first smart remote to control your smart home with just one touch—compatible with Nest, Philips Hue, Sonos, and more. Smart Remote is universal, simple, and completely customizable.”
Josh.ai setup kit
Josh: Okay, this is an automation system, BUT being that it ships with an iPad and a Mac Mini in a lovely box, it deserves a shout out as something different. Josh maintains it is the next step in voice control. The goal is to allow you to speak ‘naturally’ throughout your house to devices like Alexa. “Alexa, tell Josh it is time for bed and turn the temperature down to 68.” If you have used Alexa or other voice control, you know she will accept only one command at a time. Josh allows you the ability to give complex commands.
Fibaro Motion Sensor Fibaro: While they too are a "complete home control and automation solution,” a few of their products are, well, interesting. They sell both single and double radio controlled on/off relay switches. These allow one to turn appliances such as fans and lights on and off by utilizing the wall-switch box and not using other means of control (as in, for things that might not normally be able to be controlled and for a lesser cost). Fibaro is more module-based instead of hardware-based, and it is an interesting concept in the way we look at automation. Also in the line are window/door sensors, flood sensors, and creepy looking motion sensors (judge for yourself, see picture below). They also have a few unusual items like a swipe gesture controlled pad, a KeyFob, and The Button (very similar to Staple Easy Button). You have to give them credit for looking at this industry with a new angle.
iDevices: While not an Apple company, they are the original Apple Home Kit house. Out of their seven products, the plug and play, devices are sold to the masses, BUT in-wall devices are sold only to dealers. These devices include wall switches, dimmer switches, and wall outlets. Like many others, they too have a connected thermostat and socket and even a connected plug (allowing you to connect a plug in the device without changing the outlet out), but the one I love is the outdoor switch. It makes me think “Siri, turn on the Christmas Lights at dusk,” and that makes me smile.
Remocam and RemoBell: Want to know who is at the door even when you’re not home? Then Remocam is for you. It is similar to a Drop Cam, but with storage options. It lets you save your motion sensor videos either to the Cloud (first 30-days are free) or to a local microSD card. But here is the crazy part: the system has a built-in IR learner that allows it to learn from another remote (odd, right?). Then using the app, you can remotely turn on and off your TV.
Domoz + Fing: Fing is already one of the most downloaded apps to find Wi-Fi devices. Now they want to “Disrupt the status quo” by allowing remote management to these network devices with the “most affordable and advanced network monitoring and remote tech support system build for AV installers.” How much, you ask? $2.99 a month.
But wait, there’s more! Tune in next week for the next wave of ‘fringe’ products and services as I continue to explore the show floor.