Canary raises $10 million for app-enabled home security

Canary, a startup that hopes to reproduce with home security the success that Nest had with its app-enabled thermostats and smoke alarms, has raised $10 million in a series-A round of funding.

The funds came from Khosla Ventures, Bobby Yazdani, and seed-round investors including Two Sigma Ventures, Canary said.

The company also raised $2 million through crowdfunding at Indiegogo (it had planned to raise only $100,000, but evidently struck a nerve). The venture capital will mean Canary can hire more staff and push more quickly to develop its hardware and software.

Canary's technology pairs a mobile app with … Read more

Google Now notifications now alive in Chrome test version

Google, taking a big step in its effort to make Android and Chrome equally good homes for people's digital lives, has at last built its Google Now anticipatory notification service into its browser.

Google Now cards for Chrome are active in the very rough Canary build of Chrome, which is three steps removed from the stable version the company recommends for mainstream use. Not only that, the feature must be enabled by activating the Google Now flag by entering "chrome://flags/#enable-google-now" into the address bar then restarting.

Google has been working on building Google Now into ChromeRead more

Catching up with Canary at CES 2014

We saw an explosion of DIY home security kits in 2013, but 2014 could shape up to be the year of the all-in-one unit -- if Canary has their way.

Standing just 6 inches tall and weighing in at about 13 ounces -- about the size of a large coffee -- Canary is a little device that's big on tech. In addition to an HD night vision camera, Canary boasts motion detection, temperature and humidity sensors, and an integrated microphone and speaker, along with an accelerometer for good measure. Using the free Canary app, you'll be able to … Read more

This Piper packs a punch

This review was updated on February 20th to account for the new Android app.

Piper is a $239 Wi-Fi-enabled home security system with an intriguing all-in-one style that diverges from the DIY security system mainstream. Lately we've seen a lot of starter kits that come with motion and door/window sensors, but no camera. Examples include $199 iSmartAlarm, $199 Oplink Security TripleShield, $229 Viper Home, and $229 SimpliSafe. It's tempting to compare Piper with simpler IP-based cameras like the Dropcam Pro, but it does much more than that.

While these systems offer individual accessories, and therefore more installation … Read more

Taking Viper Home for a spin

Viper is a Directed Electronics brand that makes all sorts of car-related gadgets. Recently, though, the company added a DIY home security system to the mix. That means that this new $229.99 system, dubbed Viper Home, is competing against similar products like the $349.99 Oplink Security TripleShield, $199 iSmartAlarm, $199 Canary Smart Home Security Device, and $239 Piper.

The Canary and Piper are all-in-one hubs with built-in cameras. The Oplink and iSmartAlarm, on the other hand, have hubs and separate accessories like door/window sensors and motion detectors. Viper definitely designed its home security system in the style … Read more

DIY security options offer smarter peace of mind

Installing a home security system used to mean spending hundreds of dollars to have professionals come and hardwire your house, then paying huge fees month after month in order to keep the thing running. Systems weren't flexible, false alarms were frequent, and if you were a lowly renter, you were out of luck entirely -- despite the fact that rental units get burglarized more often than any other kind of property.

Times are changing, though, and a smart new wave of home security systems is changing the way we think about protecting our homes. These new systems are built … Read more

Canary offers smarter home security from an all-in-one gadget

If there's any doubt as to whether people are eager for new home security alternatives, just take a look at Canary, a $199 smart home security device that blew up on Indiegogo this summer, crowdfunding its way to almost $2 million worth of contributions and preorders in a little over a month (its initial goal was $100,000).

Unlike other DIY security systems that we've seen, like the iSmartAlarm and its variety of external sensors, the Canary is a singular, all-in-one device. Housed within the curved, sleek-looking body (available in white, silver, or matte black -- but oddly … Read more

Google brings touch features to Chrome Canary

Google's Chrome Canary -- a browser version that's available, but still under development -- is adding touch-friendly features to the software, according to The Verge.

The browser now includes a slide-to-navigate option that will allow users to swipe across the display to either go forward or back. Like mobile operating systems, swiping to the left in Chrome Canary takes users to the next page, while swiping to the right will take them to a previous page.

In addition, the browser comes with an "enable pinch scale" option that lets users pinch their fingers together on the … Read more

Canary aims to make home security simple and smart

Canary wants to make home security simpler and smarter. The startup is launching an Indiegogo campaign to raise $100,000 to get to the finish line, with shipment slated for May 2014.

Unlike SmartThings, which is developing a platform for building apps and devices that work with a variety of sensors, Canary is more of an all-in-one solution for home security, including video capture and motion and temperature sensing.

The 6-inch-tall and 3-inch-wide cylindrical device includes a 720p HD video camera with a wide-angle lens and night vision, and multiple sensors for tracking motion, vibration, sound, temperature, humidity, and air … Read more

Google Now notifications (almost) ready for Mac

Google continues to slowly build Google Now into its services. It made the data-rich Now-styled notifications available through an advanced option setting in Chrome for Mac on Thursday, following basic implementation in Chrome for Windows and Chrome OS earlier this year.

You can activate Google Now notifications in Chrome for Mac by typing chrome://flags into your address bar, scrolling down to the Enable Rich Notifications, and changing the setting to Enable. The setting is limited to the most unstable of the browser's builds, Chrome Canary. Canary will only work on OS X 10.6 and newer.

Google Now … Read more