|CES 2014: Companies Promote the Smart Home|
|By JON M. CHANG (@JonMChang)||Jan 9, 2014, 5:31 PM|
We may not have pneumatic tubes that rush us from room to room or robot maids dispensing pearls of wisdom, but the Jetson way of living is getting closer to reality. The Consumer Electronics Show is the place for companies to run wild with the idea of what the future could be like, and this year's show, currently underway in Las Vegas, is no exception.
With Americans now more likely to have a smartphone or Wi-Fi network to call their own, theInternet of things is getting closer to bearing fruit. Here are some of the latest gadgets to hit the CES floor that could become standard in your future home.
Sick of fumbling through your keys, trying to find the right one just to get through the door? The Goji Smart Lock and app may be right up your alley. The lock can be opened manually through the app or automatically by syncing it with your phone's Bluetooth connection.
The lock can also be used to grant people access to your house (like your house cleaner or dog walker) when you're not around, all through the smartphone app. In addition, the lock itself has a camera that can let the owner know who's at the door without looking through a peephole.
Goji is currently accepting pre-orders for the lock, which is expected to start shipping in March.
Both Samsung and LG are promoting appliances that interface with your smartphones as well. The Samsung Smart Home, as well as LG Homechat promise to keep you updated on all of your appliances, from the refrigerator to the oven and the laundry machines.
But there are some differences between the two. Samsung appliances will have cameras built into them, enabling people to get a real-time view of what's going on in their home if they're away. LG, on the other hand, is working on its own software so that homeowners can text their appliances basic commands and questions, like how long until that carton of milk goes bad or how many minutes are left on the spin cycle.
Anyone stuck with a tiny kitchen knows how hard it is to manage space on your stove top. Whirlpool is imagining a way to take out the burners and free up some space. The Verge reports that the new stove would act like a specialized touch screen. As the pots and pans heat up through inductive technology, the user could simultaneously bring up recipes without burning his or her hands. Though Whirlpool has yet to make a working prototype featuring this new type of stove, they are actively developing it and may have something more concrete to show within five years.
If you want something with Wi-Fi in your kitchen sooner, Belkin has you covered. The computer electronics company paired its Wi-Fi technology with the classic Crock-Pot, allowing users to change temperature and cooking time from their smartphone.
Belkin also plans on other household objects to get the smart home treatment, including light bulbs, air purifiers and coffee makers. The bulbs and the crock pot are expected to be available this spring.