Don’t Miss Out on the Latest Smart Home News – IKEA’s Smart Blinds, Google’s Security Fiasco, and Amazon’s Sidewalk Network Open for Testing!

GM everyone on this beautiful Sunday morning. I have some exciting news to share with you about the world of smart home technology. Belkin’s smart home brand, Wemo, is taking a step back from Matter. Meanwhile, IKEA is set to release new smart blinds in 2024, perfect for those of us who are both lazy and luminous. In other news, Google is pulling the plug on its Dropcam and Nest Secure home security systems, leaving us feeling more insecure than ever. But don’t worry, Amazon’s Sidewalk network is now open for testing, paving the way for a billion connected devices. Let’s dive in!

Why Belkin’s Smart Home Brand Wemo is Stepping Back from Matter?

Belkin’s smart home brand Wemo has decided to halt the development of smart home devices using the Matter standard. According to an email exchange with Jen Wei, Belkin’s Vice President of Global Communications and Corporate Development, the company still believes that Matter will have a positive impact on the smart home industry. However, Wemo has chosen to take a step back and reevaluate its approach to the smart home. Wei stated that Wemo will introduce new Matter products only after finding a way to differentiate them. It appears that Wemo is concerned about the potential commoditization of its smart home devices.

IKEA to Release New Smart Blinds in 2024 – Perfect for the Lazy and the Luminous!

If you’re tired of fumbling with regular blinds and risking injury just to block out the sun, IKEA has your back! The Swedish furniture giant has announced that it will be releasing updated models of its smart blinds, the Fyrtur and Kadrilj, in 2024.

These blinds are not your ordinary window dressings – they can be controlled with your smart home hub or a controller, which means you can adjust the lighting in your home theatre without ever leaving the comfort of your couch!

While IKEA has yet to disclose how the new models will differ from the current options, we can expect the updated blinds to be priced around $120 for the Fyrtur and ยฃ115 for the Kadrilj (or around $89 for our UK friends).

But why wait until 2024 when you can start living your best lazy and luminous life now? IKEA is already offering discounts on its current models of smart blinds, so head to IKEA.com and elevate your home with some fancy new window treatments.

Google Pulls the Plug on Dropcam and Nest Secure – Home Security Never Looked So Insecure!

You thought you were safe with your Dropcam and Nest Secure? Think again! Google has announced that it will be ending support for these home security systems on April 8th, 2024. And if that’s not enough to make you feel vulnerable, they’re also winding down the last few legacy Works with Nest connections (but don’t worry, you have until September 29th for that one).

But fear not, dear reader, for Google is offering a consolation prize in the form of a free indoor wired Nest Cam for Dropcam owners who subscribe to Nest Aware. Nonsubscribers get a 50 percent-off coupon, so you can keep an eye on your home for half the price – until your Dropcam stops working, that is.

It’s been a wild ride for these security systems, starting with the Dropcam HD in 2012, followed by the Dropcam Pro in 2013. Then, Google bought Nest, and Nest bought Dropcam. In 2015, Google spun Nest out when it formed Alphabet, and for a while, Google and Nest were both making smart home products. Then, Google reabsorbed Nest in 2018, and the integration has been messier than a pile of tangled wires.

Now, with the Dropcam and Nest Secure on their way out, the Nest Protect smart smoke alarms are the only Nest App-only devices left. But fear not, for Google has promised to bring them to the new Google Home app, which has been in public preview since October. No firm date yet, but surely it must be getting close… right? Just don’t hold your breath for too long, or you might set off your Nest Protect.

Amazon’s Sidewalk Network is Open for Testing – Get Ready for a Billion Connected Devices!

Amazon is inviting developers to test its new Sidewalk network, which promises to connect the next billion devices with a secure and low-cost connection to the cloud. According to Amazon’s senior vice president of Devices & Services, Dave Limp, the network now covers 90% of the US population, and developers can request a free test kit to validate the coverage for themselves. The network’s extended range could allow for the connection of devices such as smart locks and leak detectors, provided you don’t mind your toilet is connected to the internet. With estimated coverage maps available, developers can make sure they can connect their devices to the network before building them.

This is it for today, See you soon ๐Ÿ˜‰. If you have colleagues, friends, or neighbors that would benefit from knowing about smart home devices, please consider sharing them. They can sign up for the newsletter by going here.

– Gerard

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