GE raised eyebrows last year when they poured $30 million into Quirky, a New York-based start up that serves as a kind of crowdsourced think tank for product ideas. Perhaps more important than the money, though, was that GE granted Quirky's field of thinkers and inventors access to its huge stash of industrial patents, essentially asking them to do whatever they could with them.
Now, that strategy looks ready to bear fruit, as Quirky and GE have announced the launch of Aros, an air conditioner designed specifically for the smart home. Similar to the Nest Learning Thermostat, Aros promises … Read more
What if you never had to do a smell test for spoiled milk again? Instead of having to take a whiff of the sour liquid, you could just check the color of a small tag placed on the container.
This is exactly what researchers at Peking University in Beijing, China, are working on: color-coded "smart tags."
These corn kernel-sized tags can be stuck to containers of food or medicine and have the capabilities of determining whether the food has gone bad or if the medications are still active. What's more, these tags will reportedly cost less than one penny each. … Read more
After releasing an app update on Monday, Insteon announced this week that its home automation system is now compatible with the popular Nest Learning Thermostat. Owners of the Insteon Hub will be able to monitor and control the basic functions of their Nest directly from the Insteon app, along with any motion detectors, LED lights, or other smart-home gadgets they've integrated into their systems.
Insteon isn't the first system to claim compatibility with the Nest. In September, Nest announced plans for a partner-based developer program, naming the high-end automation network Control4 as partner No. 1. Other systems, like … Read more
It's Friddday! Which means it's time to roundup the best of the week in CNET video.
In our latest installment of our new How-To, DIY-tech series, The Fix, our resident how-to guru's offer up expert advice on building the ultimate home theater. They'll show you how to easily and affordably install a TV, give you tips on choosing the right screen size, as well as our top three ways to add audio to your home theater. You'll be your own home theater specialist by episode's end.
Earlier this week, Amazon revealed that it would … Read more
GE's $3,699 Profile Built-In Electric Double Convection Wall Oven offers advanced features that make it stand out from other models in its price range. A strip of red LEDs above the upper oven lets you track how much time is left until your food is finished -- a useful supplement to the standard digital timer. Even better is the remote control and pre-heat capability that comes with's GE Brillion app. None of these extras mean much without strong basic features and impressive cooking performance, but fortunately this oven has those things, too. I strongly recommend this GE … Read more
You've been hearing a lot about the "connected home" and the "Internet of Things" this year, and the buzz is only going to get more intense. With the growth of smartphone and tablet sales slowing, manufacturers are making a big push to get people to turn their old home into a smart home.
Fortunately, there are some great products already on the market that make it easy to seize the benefits of a smarter home. In this week's Top 5, I'll count down some of the simplest ways to give your home a … Read more