I hope this email finds you well and ready to embark on an exciting journey into the world of home technology! Welcome to this week’s newsletter, where I bring you the latest and most thrilling developments that are reshaping the way we live and interact with our homes. Enjoy and touch base next week.
Quilt Secures $9M in Seed Funding to Revolutionize Home Heating
Quilt, the company behind the most advanced ductless heat pump system for residential use, announced the successful closure of a $9 million seed funding round. The funding was led by Lowercarbon Capital and Gradient Ventures, with participation from Incite Ventures, MCJ Collective, Garage Capital, Climate Capital, and Spacecadet.
Quilt’s mission to reduce home-based fossil fuel dependency has attracted significant attention and support. Their innovative electric heat pump system, controlled through a first-of-its-kind integrated software platform, allows room-by-room climate control without the need for traditional furnaces and ductwork. This breakthrough technology, housed within a sleek design by award-winning industrial design studio Mike&Maaike, has the potential to revolutionize home heating and combat climate change.
The platform’s built-in AI recognizes heating and cooling patterns, maximizing efficiency and cost savings over time. Quilt aims to make heat pumps the smartest and most user-friendly solution for home heating. With a team comprising experienced individuals from notable companies like Google, Tesla, Apple, and Nest, Quilt is well-positioned to bring its vision to fruition. The company also addresses traditional installation challenges and has built a network of HVAC professionals and partners to ensure a seamless consumer experience.
Amazon Unveils New Echo Lineup and Upgrades Alexa’s Capabilities
In an exciting development, Amazon has introduced a new lineup of Echo products, offering customers even more choices in accessing their beloved personal AI, Alexa. The new devices include the Echo Pop, Echo Show 5 and Echo Show 5 Kids, and the all-new Echo Buds. Additionally, Echo Auto is now available to customers in Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Spain, and the United Kingdom.
These new devices aim to provide customers with enhanced utility and value. The Echo Pop, with its loveable semi-sphere form factor and new color options, is an affordable addition to the Echo family. The Echo Show 5 features a redesigned speaker system, deeper bass, and improved performance. The Echo Show 5 Kids, designed specifically for children, offers a space-themed design and comes with age-appropriate content and parental controls. Finally, the all-new Echo Buds provide a rich audio experience, long-lasting battery life, and hands-free access to Alexa.
More Amazon Plans to Upgrade Alexa with Advanced AI Features to Enhance User Experience
Amazon is working on enhancing its voice assistant, Alexa, with advanced features similar to OpenAI’s ChatGPT. The company aims to make Alexa more intelligent and responsive, giving users the impression that the device is “thinking” rather than simply retrieving information from a database. Amazon plans to develop a new AI technology called the Alexa Teacher Model, which will use Large Language Models (LLMs) to provide personalized, accurate, and proactive responses to user queries. By incorporating advanced AI technology, Amazon aims to regain its position as the world’s best personal assistant and provide a more conversational and personalized user experience.
Google’s Home App Opens to the Public with Enhanced Smart Home Controls
Google has announced that its Home app is no longer invite-only and will be available to everyone starting May 11th. The app has undergone a complete overhaul, introducing a new Favorites tab, an improved camera interface, support for numerous new device types, and additional controls for existing devices. The Favorites tab allows users to easily access frequently used smart home devices such as lights, locks, and cameras. However, not all legacy Nest cameras are fully integrated into the new app yet, with only the first-gen Nest Cam indoor and outdoor models receiving full integration in the preview app. Google also introduces the new Wear OS Home app, launching on May 15th, which offers animated previews for camera notifications, better on-wrist controls for devices, and quick access to the Favorites tab. Additionally, an updated version of the Home app for tablets is scheduled for June, and the new Pixel Tablet features a quick access Home Panel in its Hub mode, allowing easy access to devices without unlocking or switching users.
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