Smart home networks are rapidly gaining popularity, but some security experts worry that not enough encryption controls are coming with the products.
Security firm IOActive released an advisory (PDF) on Tuesday saying more than half a million Belkin WeMo devices are susceptible to widespread hacks. The firm uncovered several vulnerabilities in these devices, which would let hackers gain access to home networks and remotely control Internet-connected appliances.
The hacks could range from a mean-spirited prank to actually posing a danger. For example, they could be as benign as turning someone's house lights on-and-off to something dangerous like getting a … Read more
Those of you angered over reports of NSA spying are being urged to add your voices to those of a group of 5,300 companies and Web sites staging a worldwide protest.
Dubbing February 11 "The Day We Fight Back," organizations such as the Electronic Frontier Foundation, the American Civil Liberties Union, Free Press, Mozilla, Reddit, and Tumblr want Internet users to call or e-mail their legislators to pressure them to end the National Security Agency's mass surveillance program. The groups also are asking Web site owners to set up banners on their pages to urge visitors … Read more
There's little doubt that the popularity of "smart home" products is surging. Connected devices both large and small were everywhere at CES this year, and with Google buying Nest recently, it's clear that the titans of tech are paying attention.
But with all of these new devices comes a Babel-esque smattering of networking protocols -- the "languages" they use to receive and transmit data. Some speak to your router over Wi-Fi, others speak to your tablet over Bluetooth. Kwikset, Yale and Schlage make smart deadbolts that relay information using Z-Wave, while Philips Hue bulbs … Read more
Last year, we came away impressed with SmartThings and the wide variety of ways you can put the home automation system to work. That level of multi-functionality will only continue to grow in 2014, as the young start-up is set to announce "SmartThings Labs," a new component of their app that will allow users to easily integrate popular third party devices into their setups.
Tech-savvy users have already had a field day hacking SmartThings, an open platform, in order to incorporate specific devices and accomplish specific functions. SmartThings Labs plans on taking advantage of the most useful hacks, … Read more
Consumers with a budding interest in the smart home have a few new reasons to consider Belkin this year, as the company wasted little time in announcing several new smart devices at CES today. Perhaps most intriguing among them is the WeMo LED Lighting Starter Set. Consisting of a pair of the newly announced WeMo Smart LED Bulbs and a "WeMo Link" plug-in hub to help control them, Belkin's first step into smart lighting will cost $129, with additional bulbs retailing for $39.
Many of us expected home automation to take a step forward at CES this year, and Belkin didn't disappoint, announcing a new slate of WeMo devices that promise to make the smart home even smarter. With new LED light bulbs, an intriguing, multifunctional "Maker" device, and even a connected slow cooker, WeMo is looking less and less like a niche offering and more and more like a legitimate, full-fledged home network.
Belkin is adding LED bulbs to their rapidly expanding WeMo family of smart devices, the company announced today at CES.
The Belkin WeMo Smart LED Bulb is an 800 lumen 60-watt replacement that you'll be able to control remotely on Android and iOS devices using the free WeMo app. Each bulb features a warm white color temperature of 3000K along with a lifespan of 25,000 hours. You'll be able to automate the bulbs to turn on and off at certain times, or trigger them with another WeMo device, like a motion detector.
LAS VEGAS -- Belkin's Maker Kit is an interesting addition to the WeMo lineup. Many of the products we've covered up to this point have been user-friendly gadgets for the entry-level DIYer interested in home automation stuff. I'm talking about the WeMo Light Switch, the WeMo Switch + Motion, and the WeMo Insight Switch. All three of these products are very simple to set up and after that, offer basic smart home functionality (IFTTT compatibility does allow for enhanced customization, but only if you want to use it).
That's what sets the Maker Kit apart from the … Read more
LAS VEGAS -- Belkin has had some success with its WeMo line of home automation power plugs and light switches, but neither WeMo nor arguably Belkin has the brand clout to stand out from the likes of Lowe's, GE, Staples, and Philips when it comes to mass market home products.
You might not recognize Jarden, either, but its family of brands -- Oster, Sunbeam, Mr. Coffee, Crock-Pot, GrillMaster -- makes it a perfect candidate to help shepherd Belkin and WeMo into greater consumer awareness.
The Jarden-branded WeMo products Belkin is announcing here at CES include the Crock-Pot Smart Slow … Read more