CES 2013: Belkin introduces WeMo smart light switch, Android compatibility
| by Jamshed Avari |
Belkin annouced additions to its WeMo line of smart home products and an expanded strategy that will see other manufacturers introduce applicances and devices that fit into a user's connected lifestyle. The Belkin WeMo Light Switch is an addition to the existing Switch and Switch + Motion products. It replaces one or more regular light switches in a user's home and can be activated remotely via smartphone app. The WeMo infrastructure uses your home Wi-Fi. It provides for automatic scheduling and also integrates with online services including IFTTT (If Then Then That) so that simple triggers can activate one or all of the lights in a home.
Belkin WeMo Light Swich
A free WeMo app is currently available for iPad, iPod touch and iPhone, with Android 4.0+ compatibility promised "shortly after launch". The existing WeMo Switch replaces ordinary power outlets in a home, such that any appliance plugged into it can be controlled via the app and be programmed to switch itself on or off on schedule. Belkin uses the example of a potentially dangerous curling iron, which if left on by accident could pose a safety hazard. Instead of worrying about whether it was left on, and even running back home to check, a user could simply pull up the WeMo app to ensure that it is safely turned off. The WeMo Switch + Motion adds a motion sensor, allowing appliances to be switched on when a person enters a room, for example a lamp or even a security device.
Existing WeMo product range
Additionally, Belkin annouced that Jarden Consumer Solutions, manufacturer of consumer products under various brands including Oster and Crock-Pot, is the first company to adopt the WeMo platform, allowing appliances be be controlled via the owner's WeMo app and integrated into his or her smart home strategy. Appliances can be monitored remotely, triggered, programmed and interacted with via the app. "As smart devices become more prolific in the home, we wanted to give companies an easy way to reinvigorate traditional product categories with internet connectivity and the ability to integrate with other household devices and cloud-based services," said Jamie Elgie, senior director of product management at Belkin, in a press statement. "JCS is the perfect initial partner because its brands make the exact kind of products our fans have been asking us to integrate with WeMo."
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