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Kohler Has Super Technology For You and Your Home

Thursday, March 1st, 2018

Kohler KonnectSuper technology in the home is not a thing of the future, but what is happening now. Kohler has been providing your home with everyday necessities for over 100 years, and now they are updating those products with their line called Kohler Konnect. This line of products is about moments made better, with control exactly how you want it. You can control these products manually, through the app or with your voice.

The Verdera Lighted Mirror is activated with built-in Amazon Alexa voice control. With the voice control in the bathroom, you can direct your wishes to start your shower with the proper temperature and desired spray choice or a combination of sprays. The morning shower person might want a quick awakening-type of shower and the bedtime shower person might want a more massage-type, relaxing kind of shower. Verdera is equipped with integrated lighting, 2 microphones and 2 hermetically-sealed speakers, so that you don’t have any extra clutter on your counter.

In the kitchen there is a touchless faucet that is perfect for people who just want to wave their hand to turn on the water and not touch the faucet. You can also use the voice control to tell your faucet to fill your coffeepot with a pre-set amount of water. Except for Verdera, all of these products are platform-agnostic, making it very compatible with Amazon, Alexa or Google Assistant.

These products are available now except for the voice command mirror which is coming out in March. For more information go to kohler.com.

Interview by Chase Lowery of PLuGHiTz Live Special Events.
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The Sunflower is The First Autonomous Shade in The World

Thursday, March 1st, 2018

Sunflower Robotic Sun Shade by ShadeCraftShadeCraft Robotics is a start up company in California that has made it their mission to improve human interaction outdoors through connected devices and robotic technology. One of their greatest examples of working toward that mission is called the Sunflower. The Sunflower is the world’s first autonomous shade that keeps your space completely shaded for the largest part of the day by automating its movements along with the sun’s movement. It also generates and stores renewable energy using solar panels to bring the mechanism to life.

The Sunflower has speakers for any type of music from your own device and a microphone for AI commands through your smarthome system through Bluetooth and Wi-Fi built-in capabilities. But it doesn’t end there! This shade goes above and beyond for any outdoor space with an HD camera and controlled lighting. You can easily use the Sunflower as the center piece from a party to a relaxing day to yourself.

Preorders are available now on the ShadeCraft website for $6900 until the end of March when the retail price increases to $8700.

Interview by Daniele Mendez of The New Product Launchpad.
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Exciting New Technology from Casio that Will Blow Your Mind

Wednesday, February 28th, 2018

Casio Pro Trek WatchImagine having only to buy one watch for all your needs! That is what Casio is offering with their newest watch, the Casio PRO TREK. This is a smartwatch that is the ultimate in technology. This watch does practically everything. It has so many functions, only a few of which are a GPS satellite system which gives you great detail, and Mapbox, an open source mapping system which can be used online or off, and even works when you don’t have cell service. Having a PRO TREK is a wonderful way to be able to know where you are and for others to be able to locate you in the event that you get lost or stranded.

There are apps for your watch to assist in your golf game, with features such as finding local courses to play, distance between yourself and the green, par for the current hole and how other golfers have played that particular hole. Other available apps offer assistance for fishing and even for the equestrian. There is also an app for the surfer, which can be used for locating the best places to find good waves. This watch is water-resistant for up to 50 meters and shock-resistant up to 4 meters. It is built with a gap in the construction that makes it very durable and impact safe.

The watch has 13 available faces that can be personalized with different colors. There is a world-times feature and a microphone with voice control. One of the best things is an ability to “find your phone,” a problem we all have had. It also has the traditional fitness features to help track sleep and steps. This new model is available now for $500. For more information check out their website.

Interview by Marissa Schiereck of The New Product Launchpad.
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The FLIR Partners Brings More Great Things to Life

Tuesday, February 27th, 2018

FLIR Thermal Technology PartnersJust as FLIR is reaching out to developers with their new sensors, they have also developed the Thermal by FLIR Partner Program. With this program they are working with manufacturers and developers to help them get their products produced with FLIR’s thermal technology built-in. They had a few examples of final products and prototypes to show off at their booth at CES 2018.

We got to take a close look at Arzens ThermoGlass. These safety glasses have a thermal camera onboard to allow workers obtain thermal images at a glance and completely hands-free in an augmented reality, heads-up display format. They allow workers to focused during inspections, while still having the use of their hands for other important tasks, such as taking notes or operating machinery and tools.

Also on display was a Panasonic Tough Book that is outfitted to include a FLIR Camera. It is the first tablet that has been ruggedized to carry a thermal sensor. And along the same rugged theme, also on display was a CAT S60 Android smartphone with an included electron sensor. It can also be purchased from Amazon: CAT PHONES S60 Rugged Waterproof Smartphone with integrated FLIR camera.

And one of our most favorite finds at the booth was their partnership with Tinkerforge. This Maker Kit includes a Lepton component, the same sensor in the popular FLIR ONE device, so that makers can learn about, play with and incorporate thermal technology into their innovations.

You can get more information about their programs initiative at their partner site.

Also, check out these cool consumer products that are available on Amazon:
FLIR TG130 Spot Thermal Camera and Protective Case
FLIR ONE Thermal Imaging Camera for Android USB-C (Gen 3)
FLIR Systems FXV101-W Outdoor Wireless HD Video Camera

Interview by Scott Ertz of F5 Live: Refreshing Technology.
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Bringing a Great New Dimension to the Autonomous World with FLIR

Monday, February 26th, 2018

FLIR thermal imaging for autonomous vehicles FLIR has always made important tasks safer and easier with the thermal technology that they adapt into their cameras. From being able to see people and objects that couldn’t otherwise be seen, to detecting dangerous leaks to handling repairs hands-free, FLIR has touched all of our lives in ways that we aren’t even aware. While we all know that traditional infrared cameras allow sight in total darkness, bad weather and through such things as smoke and haze, FLIR allows for sight behind walls and in ceilings. And lucky for us, they continually find ways to refine and introduce this technology into new products.

One of their latest projects is venturing into the ever growing world of autonomous vehicles. On display this year is their new Automotive Development Kit (ADK). This sensor kit is targeted towards automotive software developers that are looking to add a different kind of sensor to their projects. Adding temperature sensing to the existing array of sensors already on autonomous vehicles will significantly increase the overall detection capabilities. These sensors are not meant to replace any of the sensors that are currently in use, but to be used in addition to them for an extra level of safety as thermal imaging does not have the same constraints as regular video cameras and sonar detection. Allowing developers to jump right in and discover the possibilities is a perfect way to get things started.

On display at the booth was a demonstration using the ADK hardware. In the demo, you could watch a live video of the path next to the booth, and the sensor and software together were able to identify and track humans as they passed by. This is an essential technology to allow autonomous vehicles to be able to progress from level 4 to level 5, the difference between having a steering wheel and not.

The sensors come in a few different sizes and lengths, with more improvements in the works. If you are a developer and would like more information on how to get a kit, visit their website at flir.com/adk.

Also, check out these cool consumer products that are available on Amazon:
FLIR TG130 Spot Thermal Camera and Protective Case
FLIR ONE Thermal Imaging Camera for Android USB-C (Gen 3)
FLIR Systems FXV101-W Outdoor Wireless HD Video Camera

Interview by Scott Ertz of F5 Live: Refreshing Technology.
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Declare war on crappy earbuds and treat yourself to a better headphone experience with new Monster headphones.

Gourmia Adds High Tech Smarts and Improved Convenience to the Kitchen

Sunday, February 25th, 2018

Gourmia Google Assistant Enabled AppliancesOver the last few years, Gourmia has gone from being a kitchen appliance manufacturer to being a leader in kitchen automation technology. Whether the appliance be in the form of a multi-use device, Google Assistant enabled or even remote monitoring, Gourmia has put a lot of thought into their new line of products. At CES 2018, the company showed us the latest enhancements they have made to their product offerings.

First up is a Google Assistant powered coffee maker, an upgrade to the current line. Initially you might wonder, “What might voice activation do for a coffee maker?” Once you see it in action it all becomes clear. Being able to be in your bedroom and be able to tell your coffee maker in the kitchen to start up is a great feature. Being able to say, “Good morning Google” and have the coffee start, the lights turn on and wakeup music start to play is even better.

In addition to coffee, they have added Google Assistant support to their other devices, such as a sous vide immersion pod, also an upgrade to the current line. You can control or check the temperature of the water and start and stop the cooking process, all without being in the room. Or, you could put together a recipe and automate a large portion of the process.

But Google Assistant is for more than just speaking to your kitchen. In upcoming versions of their multiuse oven and air fryer, the company is adding cameras. The camera will allow you to get a live video feed of what’s cooking, so you no longer have to open the oven to see how your pizza is doing, or open the air fryer to check on your chicken. You can do it all from the palm of your hand, or from any Google Assistant enabled device.

The products shown, with their upgraded features, will be launching starting in Quarter 2 and continuing throughout 2018, so stay tuned to their website for updates.

Interview by Chase Lowery of PLuGHiTz Live Special Events.
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Best Way to Make the Most Out of Your Presentations

Saturday, February 24th, 2018

J5create conference room screen systemAll those boring meetings in the conference room got you down? Are you tired of your staff missing half of what’s said because you don’t have a multi-presenter platform? Want your meetings to be more interactive and productive?

If you are looking for a simple and innovative way to make that leap from regular meetings to a more collaborative setting, then you have to check out the Screen Wave Technology that J5create has built into their all new JWR 2100 Router. This router-based system allows you to cast up to 9 individual devices up to a single conference room screen, thus allowing multiple contributors to all present from their own source. It is able to integrate all connected users into one screen simultaneously, for things like work collaboration and brainstorming. It is also versatile enough to allow any of the users to take over the entire screen when needed for a specific presentation, and then send it back again to all users when they are finished.

This system will turn your boring meeting room into a conference environment. It utilizes what they refer to as a puck interface that allows you to have a laptop system connected. This button is used to connect into the router and then communicate by emitting content onto the screen. The router is also Wi-Fi enabled, which means that tablets, or even cell phones, are able to interface with it via their mobile app.

Pricing to start building your system is expected to start at an MSRP of $350 and expected release is April/May of 2018.

Interview by Jacob Cannon of FIRST Looks.
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ARRAY Finds a Smart Way to be Secure in Your Home

Thursday, February 15th, 2018

Array by Brinks Home SecurityThe world of home protection has been enhanced by a new product line from Brinks Home Security called ARRAY, designed and manufactured by Hampton Products. The line features many creative products to keep you and your family safe and protected.

The first product is the Brinks Push/Pull/Rotate Handleset. The doorknob offers the ability to open by pulling the handle, as well as the traditional turn, while the handle can be opened by a simple press. The handlesets are available now in a variety of styles, including knob, lever and handle, as well as different finishes.

To compliment the handleset is the ARRAY Wi-Fi Smart Deadbolt. The deadbolt is made from military grade steel and contains a solar panel to keep the electronics powered. It also has a hands-free feature making it very useful for entering your home when your hands are full. The deadbolt can be paired to your smartphone and senses when your phone is approaching your door and unlocks it. When combined with the handleset, it makes coming home with your arms full easy. The deadbolt is available for preorder in a variety of styles and finishes.

One of the most interesting features of the ARRAY locks is the check lock ability. This feature uses the ARRAY app to check your security at bedtime without having to go back to the doors to be certain that they are closed and locked securely. Using the feature, you can eliminate your nightly “lockdown process” of verifying the state of all of your doors. You can check this from anywhere in the world and, as long as the door is closed, you can even lock or unlock the door remotely.

Next up is a set of ARRAY Smart Light fixtures. Both styles feature a 1080p camera with night vision, 270 degree motion detection, a solar panel a microphone and speaker. We’ve all had a motion sensor light go off any time a cat runs through the yard, or a neighbor who has it pointed towards the street and anyone who drives by turns on the light. The ARRAY light has built-in AI and can recognize humans for activation, meaning that animals or cars will not set it off.

The first design is a coach-style fixture, which is easy to open and change the bulb, and looks like a traditional light fixture. In addition, if two lights are needed, for example to go on either side of a garage door, there is the availability of a slave light, which has no camera but it reacts to the master’s commands. Whenever the master light turns on, so does the slave.

The second design is an LED security light. It features two LED panels with power up to 2000 lumens and can be programmed by your phone to control the brightness, in the event 2000 lumens is too bright. This fixture can also be programmed to be used as a floodlight to enjoy your outdoor area in the evening. Both of these lights will be available in the near future.

Interview by Marissa Schiereck of The New Product Launchpad.
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Cor Makes Your Environment Smart and Safe

Thursday, February 15th, 2018

Cor by CarrierHome security is one of the most important things you can spend your money on. Now, one of the oldest and most trusted names in the business of home products, Carrier, has produced a line of smarthome and security products called Cor. This is a line of professionally installed systems that will alert you as a homeowner of any breach in security such as break-ins or fire. You can use up to 16 cameras and you have total remote access.

But Cor is more than just security; it also provides a wide range of smarthome products as well. From lights to garage doors, Cor can control a lot of the devices in your home. In an example at the booth, they used a wireless button to simulate arriving at home, where the garage door opened, the living room lights came on, and as the person moved through their home, the lights would com on in the new rooms and turn off where they had left. All of this provides a nice convenience for your home, to compliment the security and safety features of the system.

This product is best served as professionally installed because of the technology involved. The starter kit is priced at under $1000 plus installation. However, when you purchase this, you own it and there is no monthly fee because it is self-monitored. In addition to the existing products, Carrier will soon be releasing a doorbell camera. For more information check out their website.

Interview by Scott Ertz of F5 Live: Refreshing Technology.
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Introducing Smart Tech for Your Smart Yard

Thursday, February 15th, 2018

b•hyve outside water timersWatering your lawn and yard can be a frustrating chore. Not only do unexpected weather conditions play a factor, there is a matter of timing to turn it on or off. Now there is b•hyve, a line of smart timers for your lawn. These timers can be connected to the internet so you truly can “set it and forget it.”

b•hyve knows the weather up to 14 days in the future and, with that knowledge, will save you up to 50% water use. It is also aware of certain restrictions in your area, such as during a drought or flooding. It can check after a rainfall to see how much it has rained so it can adjust accordingly for the next cycle, preventing overwatering. The outside and inside timers are compatible with any brand of irrigation systems, not just with Orbit systems.

Another option is a spigot timer for your outside faucet. Many people water this way, and it’s not unusual to turn on the water and leave home, forgetting it is still on. It features a flow meter inside to let you know how much water you have used, as well as to limit the amount of water used. This is very helpful when you want to fill the swimming pool for your children or even fill a large aquarium.

These products are currently available at Home Depot, Lowe’s, Walmart or Amazon. Pricepoint for this system depends on how large of a system you need or want. Outside mount with 6 stations in a weather-proof box is $100. An indoor mount for a shed or a garage is $60 for 4 stations or $80 for 8 stations. There is also a hose tap timer to be use from the end of your hose available for $40 and if you need the hub to make it Wi-Fi, it’s $70 for the pair. For more information check out their website.

Interview by Scott Ertz of F5 Live: Refreshing Technology.
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