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REVIEW Edition - IFA International 2017

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  • September
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NEWS Voice Control Fuels

NEWS Voice Control Fuels Smart Home Uptake New report talks up smart-home accessory renaissance Alexa, Siri and their voice assistant fellow travellers are underlining increased consumer demand for smart-home products, according to Futuresource Consulting’s latest Smart Home Consumer Survey. Indeed, the report predicts that the light switch may be on its way to obsolescence as consumers increasingly turn to apps on their smartphone or Amazon’s Alexa to control their homes. But the recent embrace of voice assistance looks like the real turning point in the uptake of the smart home. The Futuresource report reveals that 27% of UK homes have installed at least one smart-home device that can be controlled remotely on a mobile or hub device. The study focuses on the main smart-home categories of lighting, security, climate control and smart audio. While 30% of respondents said that they were likely to buy a speaker with voice assistant in the next six to 12 months, 12 UK consumers have already embraced climate control, with 14% of those surveyed having installed smart thermostats - Hive was the most popular brand. Philips Hue led the way in lighting – the second most important category in the smart home. Security rounded off the top three, with 8% adoption. The survey confirms the prediction that the smart home will experience major growth in the next few years. To reiterate, voice-assistant devices will be a key driver in the process, with 30% of respondents will consider buying either Echo or Google Home in the near future. Indeed, more than 19% of voice-assistant owners surveyed said they used their device to control their central heating, while a third intend to do so in the future. Meanwhile, a fifth of all Alexa or Google owners used their speaker to switch on their lights - a further 38% said they would do in the future New Smart Home Ideas from Somfy @ IFA TaHoma Premium now compatible with Amazon Alexa and IFTTT The connected home specialist, Somfy, announced at IFA that it has opened its TaHoma Premium smart home platform to Alexa, Amazon’s voice assistant, and IFTTT, a free web service. Users can now define various home scenarios and tailor them to their own lifestyles using voice commands. IFTTT integration allows the creation of even more command sequences, turning the Somfy smart home into a true allrounder for home comfort and security. With TaHoma Premium, users have just one interface to monitor, control and customise their home technology systems. The internetbased Somfy smart home system has a clean, user-friendly interface that provides a quick overview of all the products connected to the TaHoma Box. Through a tablet, laptop or smartphone, it can intuitively connect and control already up to 200 components in the home: roller shutters, interior and exterior blinds, roof windows, lighting or security sensors. Now, Somfy is stepping beyond the compatible wireless protocols of io-homecontrol, RTS, EnOcean and Z-Wave opening its smart home system to Alexa and IFTTT. After creating home scenarios with TaHoma Premium, users can use voice commands to close roller shutters and roof windows and turn off lights as they leave home, for example. IFTTT (“If-This-Then-That”) is a free cloud-based web service with over 360 companies connected so far. It allows users to create individual “applets” – smart automatisms between two independent services or connected devices – based on an “if-this-then-that” relationship. If, for example, BMW ConnectedDrive indicates that a user is about to return home, a personal "welcome scenario” can automatically open the garage door, turn on the outside lights and deactivate the all-in-one security solution Somfy One. The possibilities are virtually limitless. The smartphone alarm could, for example, launch a “good morning” scenario in which the rolling shutters go up and the coffeemaker turns on, or retract the awnings and close the roof windows if the weather service announces an imminent downpour

NEWS Yale Smart Door Locks The days of forgotten keys are over thanks to ENTR Yale Smart Door Locks that give users the option to use a PIN code, fingerprint reader, remote key fob, or even a smartphone to unlock the door. Furthermore, users can grant access to family, friends and visitors if they need to enter the home when none of the regular residents are present. An advanced digital lock, ENTR also integrates with Yale’s smart home alarm so that unlocking doors with the Yale app automatically disarms the alarm Elgato Will Look After Your Smart Home Smart home company Elgato was at IFA to launch new Eve-branded home security accessories that are connected via Apple HomeKit. Users can communicate with, and control, connected accessories in the home using an app, or trigger them using the Siri voice assistant. These include the Eve Lock, Eve Window Guard, Eve Smoke and Eve Aqua. Eve Aqua utilises irrigation control in iOS to turn any garden hose into a Siri voicecontrolled water outlet. Eve Lock turns the main door to the house into a self-locking entrance, automatically securing the home against breakin attempts Devolo Showcases New dLAN 1200 triple+ With Three Gigabit Ports at IFA 2017 German-based devolo AG launched the new dLAN 1200 triple+ at IFA 2017. Video and audio streams are transmitted via household power lines at lightning-fast speeds up to 1.2 gigabits. This means that the new dLAN 1200 triple+ provides gigabit Internet at every power socket. The new Powerline adapter is ideal for fast networking of all multimedia devices, including game consoles, smart TVs, computers and network printers. Devolo uses the slogan, "the magic of a perfect connection" to showcase how easy it is to install dLAN Powerline adapters to establish fast internet throughout the home for more multimedia fun IFA International • Friday 15 th September 2017 13

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