SmartThings Home Automation

The Boy Genius Report: Why Home Automation is Being Disrupted

By on January 13, 2014 at 10:45 AM.

The Boy Genius Report: Why Home Automation is Being Disrupted

The entire home automation industry is about to be upended by startups. Companies that are starting out small have a clear and concise vision: one in which your home and the many things in it can all communicate and work seamlessly with each other.

I have been looking for the perfect way to automate a room, a whole floor, and an entire house for the past ten years and have consistently been disappointed. Disappointed with the integration, the cost, the flexibility, and the ease of use. More →

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“We now live in a world where there is no downtime.”
— Darren Murph
Always-on Lifestyle

Email, Twitter and the always-on lifestyle: Today’s double-edged sword

By on December 2, 2013 at 10:50 AM.

Email, Twitter and the always-on lifestyle: Today’s double-edged sword

Today, I made a choice. I made a choice to carve out a chunk of time to write this article, but I did so at the expense of communication. I very intentionally decided to cast my eyes in the other direction by ignoring a deluge of inbound inquiries, and to be honest, I’m still unsure as to whether it was the right decision. Five years ago, I might have suggested that those employed in the digital industry would understand where I was coming from, but today, I’m more inclined to believe that everyone in a developed country would get the gist. This is the era where personal time becomes a relic, silence is the new distraction, and 24/7 expectations bleed from petrol stations into every possible aspect of your life. Consider this: how many requests are you presently ignoring by taking the time to read these words?
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Top-10 Tech Web Mobile 2013

10 awesome new (and old) things you need to know about in 2013

By on January 18, 2013 at 4:04 PM.

10 awesome new (and old) things you need to know about in 2013

We’re just three weeks into 2013 and it’s surprising what a difference a year can make. RIM (RIMM) is on the rise as Apple (AAPL) is getting crushed, Samsung (005930) is supposedly generating Apple-like hype, and connected home appliances outshined smartphones at CES. It’s a brave new world indeed, but here are 10 awesome new (and old) things to keep you grounded in 2013 while you put 2012 behind you and try to forget Gangnam Style ever happened. More →

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Microsoft Surface Launch

A brave new world: Microsoft Surface now available for purchase

By on October 26, 2012 at 9:45 AM.

A brave new world: Microsoft Surface now available for purchase

Welcome to the new Microsoft (MSFT). The world’s largest software company is now officially a Windows hardware vendor, having launched its debut tablet at midnight Friday morning. Crowds seeking out at Microsoft pop-up stores were surprisingly large in some cases — AllThingsD’s Ina Fried posted some great photos from the Times Square store on her Twitter account — and orders for the tablet that seems to be OEMs’ worst nightmare placed on Microsoft’s website still won’t ship for at least three weeks. While the company did say supplies would be limited at launch, we know from conversations during our visit to Redmond that Microsoft has high hopes for the Surface and it looks like things are off to a good start. Are you thinking about buying one? Did you just purchase a Surface and you’re wondering where to start? Not interested in the Surface but want to know more about Windows 8? Here are some resources that might help: More →

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The New BGR

By on October 22, 2012 at 7:25 AM.

The New BGR

BGR first launched just about six years ago. In that time, there have been two redesigns and today marks the third. This one is a major one, and we’re finally also rebranding with new logos, colors and a new personality. First off, you’ll notice that the site’s new home page does two things: it gets you the latest and most important information while also doing a better job of highlighting important and original content.

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The difference between ‘need’ and ‘want’

By on October 18, 2012 at 11:15 AM.

The difference between ‘need’ and ‘want’

Microsoft (MSFT) began airing its debut Surface tablet commercial earlier this week and early responses have been mixed. I have seen some praise strewn about the Web, but the loudest responses to the ad seem to come from tech bloggers and pundits who have panned the colorful commercial because it doesn’t focus on showing us the Surface’s various functions or its benefits over Apple’s (AAPL) market-leading iPad. There have been a few valid points made amid the chatter, but most of these complaints are missing the big picture by a mile.

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Microsoft Surface Analysis

Beneath the Surface: Inventing the tablet that reinvents Microsoft

By on October 16, 2012 at 11:15 AM.

Beneath the Surface: Inventing the tablet that reinvents Microsoft

Both literally and figuratively, Microsoft’s (MSFT) Surface is more than just a tablet. In the literal sense, the sleek device is something of a tablet-notebook hybrid that employs a novel design and innovative accessories to make creating content just as convenient as consuming content. Figuratively, the Surface marks the dawn of a new era at Microsoft. The world’s largest software company has produced hardware before, but this time things are different. This is not a secondary business like Xbox or an ill-conceived also-ran like the Zune. This is Microsoft’s vision of the ideal vehicle for Windows, the foundation on which thousands of businesses are built. On top of that, the Surface represents a fundamental shift in Microsoft’s strategy. No longer will the company build software and rely solely on its partners to sell it. Instead, Microsoft will build experiences.

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iPhone Giveaway RadioShack

RadioShack’s epic PR win (iPhone giveaway!)

By on September 27, 2012 at 11:30 AM.

RadioShack’s epic PR win (iPhone giveaway!)

Public relations is a tough gig, and tech PR may be among the toughest due to the sheer volume of companies constantly fighting for coverage. Tech writers can get a hundred or more emails each day from PR companies hoping to get their clients publicity, so it is no easy task to concoct a pitch that draws interest. There isn’t a magic recipe for standing out in the crowd of PR flacks vying for coverage, but the best way to separate yourself from the pack and avoid wasting writers’ time and your clients’ money is often to simply pay attention. RadioShack (RSH), as it turns out, is very good at paying attention. More →

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Galaxy S III Jelly Bean Update

Because competing with Apple is way too easy, Samsung finds new rival in Facebook

By on September 26, 2012 at 11:55 AM.

Because competing with Apple is way too easy, Samsung finds new rival in Facebook

As if the task of competing with Apple’s (AAPL) new iPhone 5 isn’t daunting enough, Samsung (005930) has chosen an interesting approach to promoting its flagship Galaxy S III smartphone in the U.S. that inadvertently brings a new rival into the mix: Facebook (FB). As dominant as Apple is in the mobile industry — the company accounted for 77% of all mobile industry profits last quarter — Facebook is equally in command of the social space. But nevertheless, Samsung’s recent promotional efforts in the U.S. take aim squarely at one of Facebook’s key features. More →

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Sick of the iPhone? Here are all the best alternatives to Apple’s new iPhone 5

By on September 21, 2012 at 3:00 PM.

Sick of the iPhone? Here are all the best alternatives to Apple’s new iPhone 5

Apple’s (AAPL) latest and greatest smartphone is now available nationwide. Anticipation for the iPhone 5 had reached an all-time high, with launch-day preorder stock selling out in less than an hour at Apple and total sales during the first 24 hours of availability topping 2 million units. Despite the bad press surrounding Apple’s new Maps app, the company is expected to sell as many as 10 million units during the iPhone 5′s first weekend. While the new iPhone has its perks, not everyone is interested in iOS, the iPhone or even Apple in general. If you decided to pass on the iPhone 5, or if you are just sick and tired of all the Apple news, you have come to the right place. Read on for the best iPhone 5 alternatives that will be available this holiday season. More →

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iPhone 5 Competition NFC

Apple’s iPhone 5 is now available for sale – here’s where you can buy one right now

By on September 21, 2012 at 8:00 AM.

Apple’s iPhone 5 is now available for sale – here’s where you can buy one right now

It has been a long time coming, but the iPhone 5 is finally here. Apple (AAPL) announced last week that its highly anticipated iPhone 5 would launch on September 21st, and anxious Apple fans who preordered their smartphones are awaiting deliveries or heading to their local Apple Stores to pick them up now. Were you one of the unlucky ones who tried to preorder an iPhone but didn’t get around to it until launch-day preorder inventory was sold out? Hit the break for a list retailers where you can pick up a new iPhone 5 if you’re willing to fight through the lines that are probably already forming. More →

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iPhone 5 Preorders

All the biggest surprises from today’s iPhone 5 event

By on September 12, 2012 at 3:25 PM.

All the biggest surprises from today’s iPhone 5 event

Apple’s (AAPL) iPhone 5 event is finally behind us, and the company’s next-generation smartphone is probably just over a week away from becoming the fastest-selling iPhone yet. Now that the new iPhone is official, the phone’s key specs are confirmed: it will feature a 4-inch display, a new processor and a fresh new design that is just 7.6 millimeters thick. Considering all the rumors, leaks, photos and videos that led up to Wednesday announcement, the iPhone 5 really wasn’t much of a surprise at all. As is typical of Apple, however, the company did manage to pitch a few curveballs during its press conference, and here are all the biggest surprises. More →

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iPhone 5 Rumor Preorders

What to expect from the iPhone 5

By on September 10, 2012 at 12:10 PM.

What to expect from the iPhone 5

The worst-kept secret in the consumer electronics industry is finally about to become the biggest smartphone launch of the year — Apple (AAPL) is unveiling the iPhone 5 on Wednesday. We’ve seen it in photos, we’ve seen it on video, and now we’ll finally see the full picture painted on stage in San Francisco later this week. Estimates suggest Apple could sell 5.5 million or more iPhone 5 handsets during its debut weekend, and everyone seems to agree it will be the biggest consumer electronics launch of all time. There are plenty of things Apple’s next-generation iPhone won’t fix, but let’s take a look at what we can expect from the iPhone 5.

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