Elevate Your Smart Home Experience – Amazon Maps View, Google Home Updates, IKEA’s Shortcut Button, and a new Preamplifier

gm! Hope all is good, whereever you are in the world.

Getting close to Christmas and lots of shopping going on at the O’Driscoll household!

This week, I’m bringing you a roundup of exciting news from the smart home industry, covering everything from visual control to personalized experiences and streamlined automation.

Amazon Maps View: A Visual Revolution for Smart Home Control

Amazon has introduced a groundbreaking feature to its Alexa smart home platform – a visual map view that transforms your home into an interactive digital interface. This innovative tool allows you to seamlessly control your smart home devices from a bird’s-eye perspective, making it easier than ever to adjust lights, thermostats, and other appliances with just a tap.

The visual map view is particularly useful for managing multiple smart home devices simultaneously. You can instantly see the current status of your devices and make changes across different rooms with ease. This visual approach enhances the overall user experience and makes it more intuitive to manage your smart home ecosystem.

Google Home Update: Customization Meets Convenience

Google has rolled out a significant update to its Google Home smart home platform, introducing several enhancements that cater to personalized preferences and streamlined automation. One key feature is the ability to create custom clips, allowing you to combine multiple actions into a single voice command.

For instance, you can create a “Good Night” clip that simultaneously turns off the lights, sets the thermostat to a comfortable temperature, and locks the doors. Such custom clips can significantly simplify your daily routine and provide a more personalized smart home experience.

Furthermore, Google Home now offers enhanced support for the first-generation Nest Cams, enabling users to view and interact with their Nest Cam feeds directly from the Google Home app. This integration provides a seamless way to monitor your home’s security while on the go or from the comfort of your sofa.

IKEA Launches New Smart Home Shortcut Button

IKEA, a leading home furnishing retailer, has unveiled a new smart home shortcut button, the SOMRIG. This compact and intuitive device allows you to control various smart home devices with a single press, simplifying daily tasks and reducing the need for multiple voice commands or manual interactions.

The SOMRIG button can be customized to trigger a pre-programmed sequence of actions, such as turning on a specific lighting scene, activating the thermostat for a comfortable temperature, or activating your favorite music playlist. This versatile device caters to various preferences and enhances the convenience of managing your smart home.

Bryston BP-19 Preamplifier Debuts in the UK

Bryston, a renowned manufacturer of high-performance audio equipment, has introduced its latest preamplifier, the BP-19, to the UK market. This powerful yet compact preamplifier seamlessly integrates with Bryston’s renowned power amplifiers and offers exceptional sound quality and versatility.

The BP-19 features advanced circuitry and high-quality components to deliver a refined and detailed audio experience. It supports multiple input options, including balanced and unbalanced XLR, RCA, and digital coaxial and optical connections. Additionally, it offers a variety of customization options, allowing users to tailor its performance to their preferences.

As always, the smart home industry continues to innovate with groundbreaking technologies that enhance the functionality, convenience, and personalization of our living spaces. These latest developments from Amazon, Google, IKEA, and Bryston demonstrate the commitment to providing increasingly advanced and user-friendly smart home solutions.

As a smart home enthusiast, you’re at the forefront of this exciting transformation, and the possibilities for enhancing your home experience are endless. Stay tuned for more updates as the smart home industry continues to evolve.

With warm regards,


Editor, Smart Home Weekly Newsletter

P.S. If you have colleagues, friends, or neighbors who would benefit from knowing about smart home devices, please consider sharing this newsletter with them. They can sign up for the newsletter by going here.

– Gerard


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