Another wild week around the world! And Covid seems to continue its onward march in people’s lives everywhere. For a little bit of light reading, check out some smart home stories I ran across during the past seven days:
Apple Siri Tiger Sounds 🐅
Yes, you read correctly, Apple has added a new fun trick to its voice assistant that allows users to ask Siri to play animal sounds. In addition to animal sounds, Siri is also able to play musical instruments and vehicle sound samples. Could be a fun feature for kids to mess around with. Check out a video of the feature in action over at the verge.
Apple TV & Chromecast
Apple seems to be cozying up with Google when it comes to television. According to some sources, it looks like Apple is now allowed to publish their TV app on Chromecast with Google TV. For a company that has always kept everything in a closed ecosystem, it’s great to Apple using strategic partnerships to expand its viewership of Apple TV+ content. With regards to timelines, there are no specifics other than Google saying that availability will be “early next year”. Todd Spangler has some more insights into the upcoming service over at Variety.com.
See Ya Google Home Max
Bye, bye yet another Google device, this time around it’s the Home Max Smart Speaker. With this announcement, Google has vacated the high-end smart speaker space and leaves that segment to Apple HomePod, Sonos, and a raft of niche providers. As of the beginning of 2021, Google can focus audio energies on their two remaining smart speaker models, Nest Audio and Nest Mini. Don’t worry if you have splashed out money, because Google has committed to continue to receive software updates and security fixes. For more on this story, check out this article over at the Motley Fool.
Another HomeKit Camera
This is good! Our neighbors (Netatmo) in France have entered the smart doorbell marketplace. In an effort to compete in this space Netatmo, has bundled a raft of features into this piece of electronics, including:
- Advanced AI capabilities
- Built-in microphone and loudspeaker
- Supports local video footage on a MicroSD card
- Compatible with HomeKit secure video for those of you who run an Apple enabled smart home
Furthermore, the company announced that it will not charge a monthly fee for storing your video files recorded at the front door. Pretty cool and worth checking out.
New YouTube Video 📹
Really lazy when it comes to Youtube over the years, but did get around to publishing an excerpt video from my 8 weeks smart home course.
Weekly Smart Home Voice Command! 🎤
Alexa, What’s the temperature in kitchen?
Thanks for reading! Gerard
P.S. For those who feel the choice of smart home systems and solutions out there can be overwhelming, then why not consider taking part in the Smart Home in 8 Weeks Course in 2021