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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Jan 07, 2016 1 comments
Have you heard of Riva Audio? Yeah, me neither—until earlier this evening when I attended a press reception in the Riva Audio suite at the Westgate Hotel in the midst of all the craziness that is CES. Riva currently offers two extremely well-reviewed models of portable, rechargeable, Bluetooth speakers: the water-resistant Turbo S and the larger, more powerful Turbo X. (You can read Lauren Dragan’s review of the Turbo X here. But that’s just the beginning for the young company, because Riva plans to introduce a wireless, multiroom speaker ecosystem later this year.
Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Jan 06, 2016 1 comments
Most battery-powered smoke detectors are designed to give a warning when the battery is running low, and that’s a good thing. On the other hand, it’s almost inevitable that your smoke detector will wait until the middle of the night before it starts emitting that purposely annoying chirp warning sound. The Roost Smart Battery For Smoke Alarms is a dead-simple, very affordable device that will prevent middle-of-the-night chirping and also add some smarts to your “dumb” smoke alarm.
Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Jan 06, 2016 1 comments
Parent company Invoxia calls Triby “the next generation voice-controlled speaker for the kitchen”, which is a relatively boring, generic description for a device that is much more exciting than that tag line makes it seem to be. And now that Triby is “the first third-party device to announce integration with the Amazon Alexa Voice Service” it’s even more exciting.
Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Jan 05, 2016 4 comments
Despite the fact that CES2016 hasn't even officially opened yet, DISH's press conference is likely to be one of the top highlights of the entire Show this year.

Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Jan 05, 2016 1 comments
Although you might mistake the company’s name, Beddit, for something likely to be sold in an adult video store, the Beddit Smart Sleep Tracker isn’t all fun and games. In fact, the new Beddit Smart Sleep Tracker is super-serious about helping you get a good night’s sleep—and get even better sleep as time goes on.
Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Jan 05, 2016 1 comments
Sure, it's not our normal beat. But who wouldn't want a Candy Crush scented phone case...?
Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Jan 05, 2016 1 comments
One of Sengled’s tag lines is “Be Surprised”; and if you had walked into CES Unveiled on Monday evening without a clue as to who or what Sengled is, you’d have been quite surprised at what the LED smart bulb maker has been up to over the past 12 months.
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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Dec 14, 2015 0 comments
Sonos Trueplay. What is it, and can it make a stuffed bear disappear?
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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Dec 04, 2015 1 comments
Still looking for the perfect gift for the smart home "enthusiast" (aka, geek)? Here are some smart ideas for smart gifts for smart homes and apartments—even caves and straw huts...as long as there's internet access, that is.
Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Oct 22, 2015 1 comments
I heard what seemed like hundreds of vendor pitches and saw thousands of new products at CEDIA EXPO 2015 before it closed on Saturday, October 17th. Here are some of the coolest things we didn't cover previously in our (should have been) award-winning CEDIA blog...
Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Oct 13, 2015 1 comments
Our Coverage Begins Wednesday, October 14

Better late than never. CEDIA EXPO 2015—“the global showcase of the future home experience”—officially begins this week on Wednesday, October 14, with the Tradeshow portion of EXPO opening at 9:00 AM on Thursday. Normally, EXPO takes place in September; but due to scheduling conflicts, the custom install event of the year takes place a month later. Another change this year is that rather than happening in the smaller, cozier confines of Indianapolis or Denver, EXPO is returning to a city that saw some of the earliest CEDIA conventions—Dallas, Texas. We’re sending a bevy (yes, a bevy) of editors and contributors to Big D to cover the newest, the best, the most interesting, and even the most ridiculous things that’ll be announced or on display at this year’s EXPO. Starting Wednesday, make sure you check out our CEDIA EXPO 2015 blog.

If you’re not familiar with CEDIA EXPO, it’s a fascinating custom installapalooza chockablock with all sorts of vendors involved in one way or another with custom installation (CI) tools, products, devices, and systems. Although this is ostensibly a show aimed at professional installers and designers, there are usually a number of DIY systems on display, as well. Here’s a sampling of some of the more interesting things we’ll be on the lookout for...

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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Sep 29, 2015 1 comments
Sonos is already the king of the hill when it comes to “filling your home with music” (a.k.a., wired and/or wireless multi-room streaming audio systems that are convenient, easy-to-use, and sound great). But later this year, when the company rolls out the “all-new” new PLAY:5 and the absolutely stunning room-acoustic-tuning technology, called Trueplay, Sonos is likely to become—like Kleenex®, BAND-AID®, and Xerox®—synonymous with the entire product category it helped create.

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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Sep 08, 2015 1 comments
When it comes to digital technology, being an early adopter is almost always painful. There’s the time and energy required during the initial learning curve, the (sometimes ridiculous) expense of the gear, and the discovery of bugs that inevitably need to be squashed. Of course, there are plenty of benefits to being on the cutting edge...
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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Aug 17, 2015 2 comments
If you’re an AV aficionado, enthusiast, geek, or however you think of yourself, Logitech’s Harmony is most likely the first—and maybe only—name that comes to mind when you hear the term “universal remote control.” Although none of the company’s remote controls are perfect (the perfect universal remote control only exists in that magical fantasy world inhabited by unicorns and hard drives that never crash), Harmony’s remotes have been good enough to pretty much crush the competition in the $30 to $350 range. Despite their king-of-the-hill position, Logitech nearly sold off the Harmony division in 2013. It’s a good thing they didn’t, because since then the company has embraced home automation in many of its universal remote controls—and recently Harmony has turned that embrace into a giant bear hug.
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Darryl Wilkinson Posted: Aug 04, 2015 3 comments
50, 25, 7, and 1. Those were the numbers my son told me about when I helped him and his wife move from one apartment to another over the weekend. We wouldn’t have had the conversation at all were it not for Comcast. Because moving isn’t already painful enough, Comcast was able to add to the misery by wasting an hour of our time with a needless trip to one of their “service” centers—and, of course, add a $35 service charge for the trouble. (Considering that Comcast had to pay at least two service representatives to act like utter dimwits, $35 is really a bargain.) Since my son and daughter-in-law only need high-speed Internet and couldn’t care less about cable TV, I wondered aloud if they’d considered switching to another ISP.

Competition being what it isn’t, my son told me the sordid broadband story...

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