REMOTELY POSSIBLE

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Darryl Wilkinson  |  Jan 09, 2016  |  3 comments
At first glance, I thought the folks at BeON Home must have a hole in their collective heads for promoting LED lights with holes in the middle of them. The BeON bulbs are smart bulbs, too, but with a difference. Can’t these guys do anything normal?
Darryl Wilkinson  |  Mar 17, 2015  |  0 comments
Remote controls suck. Even the best remote controls, such as the Harmony Ultimate Home, suffer from issues that are inextricable parts of what make a remote control a remote control. For instance, there are buttons to press. They’ll either be too small for some people, or the layout won’t be ideal for others. Then there’s the fact that it’s easy to misplace a remote control. Some wind up in between the cushions on the couch. Others—and this happens more often than you would think—have been known to mysteriously make their way inside the kitchen refrigerator. Those are just two of the many problems associated with remote controls for the average person. Now think about that remote control from the standpoint of someone who is up in years and is perhaps suffering from arthritis and/or poor eyesight. For the elderly, remote controls don’t just suck, they’re often impossible to use...
Darryl Wilkinson  |  Jan 06, 2017  |  0 comments
Lockitron’s latest smart door lock iteration, the Lockitron Bolt, is unlocking a new level of affordability in DIY smart locks. Unlike the original crowdfunded Lockitron, the fit over existing deadbolts, the Lockitron Bolt is a full replacement deadbolt device that includes a Key Match feature allowing for the Bolt cylinder to be used with the homeowner’s or apartment renter’s original key. Since the Bolt is designed to replace an existing deadbolt—rather than fit over an existing mechanism—the new smart lock is smaller (1.1-inches deep, 7-inches tall, and 2.75-inches wide) with a knob that is only 0.7-inches deep. The center point of the knob is 1.2 inches from the bottom of the unit, so there is plenty of room for use with separate doorknobs and doorhandles.

The standard Bolt has...

Darryl Wilkinson  |  Sep 04, 2007  |  1 comments
Wireless transmission of data may look like the wave of the future, but it's a lot further along in the computer world than in the traditional AV environment. Yes, manufacturers are undoubtedly burning the midnight oil in hopes of becoming the first to develop a wireless standard for high quality transmission of audio and video programming inside the home. But for now, good old hard wiring is the only way to go.
Darryl Wilkinson  |  Jan 08, 2016  |  1 comments
Cassia Networks demonstrated what the company is calling, “the world’s first Bluetooth router which uses a new enabling technology that redefines what’s possible with Bluetooth.” The word router isn’t one that’s normally heard in association with Bluetooth. Nor is the term “long-range”. (I’ve used another choice term or two when talking about Bluetooth, but we’ll leave those unspoken for the moment.)
Darryl Wilkinson  |  Oct 08, 2013  |  0 comments
Shortly before CEDIA 2013 kicked off in Denver last month, I wrote a post about some of the things I was looking forward to seeing at this year’s EXPO. There certainly wasn’t anything earth-shattering or paradigm-shredding introduced within the confines of the Denver Convention Center. But that doesn’t mean there weren’t a few standout products and super-slick demos hidden amongst the hundreds of crowded EXPO booths. We covered a lot of them.
Darryl Wilkinson  |  Sep 12, 2016  |  0 comments
Sound & Vision's coverage of CEDIA 2016 kicks off on Wednesday. As usual, our hard-working, no-time-for-partying crew will be posting daily so be sure to check back here as often as you can so you don’t miss any of the excitement.
Darryl Wilkinson  |  Sep 26, 2016  |  0 comments
Voice integration and what it means for the future of home automation was a hot topic at CEDIA 2016, which attracted more than 500 exhibitors and almost 19,000 attendees.
Darryl Wilkinson  |  Sep 09, 2014  |  First Published: Sep 08, 2014  |  0 comments
2014 CEDIA Expo Coverage Begins Wednesday

In the grand scheme of all things electronic, it’s not as big a deal as the annual CES in Las Vegas. In many respects, though, CEDIA Expo 2014 is an even more important event for people interested in customizing home technologies to make them seamless, integral parts of their customers’ lives. Oh, hell, what am I saying? “Customizing home technologies…” The guys—and most of them are guys, although that’s changing—who go to the CEDIA Expo every year are fascinated by gear that can be hidden, be controlled at a distance, is motorized or otherwise moveable, and can be tweaked and tinkered with. Sure, we talk about "lifestyles", but the reality is we go to CEDIA to geek out on the gear.

It’s a completely safe bet that when the show floor at CEDIA Expo 2014 officially opens at 9:00 AM on Thursday, September 11, the place will be packed‐and a number of us from Sound & Vision will be fighting our way through the throngs of installers, designers, specifiers, representatives, and booth demonstrators...

Darryl Wilkinson  |  Oct 07, 2014  |  0 comments
CEDiA 2014 is over and done, but its effects will linger on in the form of first impressions, developing trends, and new technologies. By the numbers, it was a great convention with more than 480 exhibitors and well over 18,000 attendees who made the trek to Denver from 82 countries around the world. But those are the dry statistics. What’s much more exciting was the stuff we saw and heard, as well as the trends we noticed and how they’re going to affect the industry. (By the way, CEDIA didn’t officially change the organization’s name. I did, but I’ll get to that later.)

Dolby Atmos was still too new to have been everywhere on the Expo floor. In those booths where it was being demonstrated, though, it was...

Darryl Wilkinson  |  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...

Darryl Wilkinson  |  Jan 22, 2014  |  0 comments
CES is just too big for any one human being - or, in our case, nine human beings - to cover completely. And, unless you’re a word-factory like my compatriot, John “The Sciacca” (who, I believe, outsources his blogs and reviews to a small company in Sri Lanka), it’s damn near impossible to write about everything you see at CES while you’re in Las Vegas. And then, of course, there are all the things you didn’t see but wished you had...
Darryl Wilkinson  |  Jan 11, 2016  |  2 comments
A look at the smart home category and why it didn’t have quite the sizzle at CES 2016 as it has had during past shows.
Darryl Wilkinson  |  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  |  Oct 22, 2013  |  3 comments
Maybe I’m still suffering the aftereffects of installation overstimulation at CEDIA last month, but it seems that everywhere I turn someone’s talking up home automation. Yesterday, for example, Control4 issued a press release touting – and rightly so – the many benefits of integrating home security systems with home automation systems. While that’s definitely awesome, the more interesting buzz that I’ve noticed lately isn’t about Home Automation, where the cost of the hardware, installation, and programming is often discussed in terms of a percentage of the cost of the home it’s installed in. No, the chatter du jour is about home automation “for the rest of us” (to borrow a term from Apple that originally had nothing to do with price, nor does it now). Once again, there’s a push to bring home automation to the masses – or at least to the smaller masses who would be willing to spend a couple hundred bucks for it.

But what kind of home automation can you get for $200 or maybe, if you’re willing to splurge, $300?

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