August Smart Technology Round-Up

Perry Hiiman
September 2, 2021
August Smart Technology Round-Up

Smart Ovens
Get it Here: GE Profile™ 30″ Smart Built-In Convection Double Wall Oven with In-Oven Camera and No Preheat Air Fry

Now we know what you’re thinking; why would I need a smart oven!? Well, hear us out. Many smart ovens connect directly to your phone where you can control functions like pre-heating, needed software updates, and more! The particular oven we are featuring here is the @GE Profile™ 30″ Smart Built-In Convection Double Wall Oven with In-Oven Camera and No Preheat Air Fry. This marvelous peeve of technology even has a built-in oven camera that connects to your phone so you can make sure you never burn another piece of food again! Among other awesome features, this smart oven also features precision cooking modes, which helps you ensure that everything from whole chickens, to succulent salmon steaks are cooked to perfection with automatic adjustments to oven temperatures and cook times!

From a design standpoint, this oven is just beautiful. It comes with a bright, interactive 7” touch screen that includes custom screen backgrounds, weather updates and a pop of intrigue with fun food facts, and has a soft-close feature- so no more unintentional oven door slams here! One of the more underrated features however is the roller racks, which allows you to remove even the heaviest dutch oven with ease. They are heavy-duty and are engineered to glide seamlessly out of the oven. This particular model comes in two finishes, stainless steel and black stainless and is available in 30” and 27”.

Smart Refrigerator
Get it Here: LG Smart Instaview Refrigerator

Staying in the kitchen for the moment, another super convenient piece of Smart Tech that we recommend taking a look at is the smart refrigerator- particularly the LG Smart Instaview Refrigerator line. This line comes in quite a few different sizes and styles, making it easily adaptable to most kitchens, and is available in two different finishes. What makes this refrigerator so special, and the reason it made our list, is because of all the amazing features it offers. Offering plenty of space, this refrigerator gives you a bang for your buck with a Slim SpacePlus® Ice System, which basically means the ice maker is built into the door and does not impede shelf space. It also offers the InstaView™ Door-in-Door® which is a sleek tinted glass panel that illuminates the inside compartment of the door by knocking on it- you never even have to open the door- so you waste less energy and keep food fresher! How cool is that?!

There are a lot of other cool features on this appliance, but the most important in our opinion, is what makes this a “smart” piece of technology, and that is the ThinQ® app. Not only can you control certain features of your refrigerator from this app, but it will actually start tracking your habits, and learn! The Smart Learner feature on the ThinQ® app analyzes habits to anticipate temperature, ice & energy needs. You can even turn on a craft ice selection from the app to make slow-melting ice for cocktails twice as fast….we don’t know about you, but we’ve never met an appliance quite so smart!

Get it Here: Nest Thermostat (3rd Generation)

This incredible piece of technology actually learns your habits and what temperatures you prefer at certain times of the day! This is the 3rd generation of the Nest Thermostat, and their most inventive design yet. While this generation offers all of the auto-scheduling features of its predecessors, this one has a slimmer design, a larger LCD, Bluetooth support, and geofencing technology! It even works with numerous third-party devices and supports voice commands through Google Home and Amazon’s Alexa. This awesome device comes in seven polished metal color options and is the most capable smart thermostat under the Google Nest brand.

Bonus: A great eco-friendly feature is the Home/Away feature that uses motion detectors to determine if someone is home. When the geofencing feature senses that you are home with your phone, the thermostat will remain in Home mode, and when you leave it will switch over to Away mode.

Smart Lock
Get it Here: August Smart Lock

We know how important it is to keep yourself and your family safe and secure in your own home, and the August Smart Lock will help you do just that.

Never worry that you’ve left your door unlocked (or that you’ve locked yourself out!) again! This marvelous home addition automatically locks when the door closes, or after a set amount of time, and uses geo-fencing from your smart watch or phone, to automatically unlock the front door when you get home. Not only does it allow you ease of entry, but it allows you to give guests and workers secure individual key codes so they can easily come and go during the day- or you can manually give access via the app on your phone. Speaking of the app, you’ll be able to monitor exactly what time anyone enters and leaves your home, with August’s Activity Feed.

One of the best features in our opinion though, is DoorSense. This feature is only available on August’s products and is a sensor that tells you whether your door is securely closed and locked, so no more running back to your door to see if you closed it! Finally this product features Smart Alerts which will tell you if anything changes with the status of your door- such as comings and goings, if it is ajar, locked or unlocked!

Logitech Harmony Home Hub
Get it Here: Logitech Harmony Hub

Are you someone who is tired of using multiple remotes for multiple devices? Always misplacing your TV remote? If this sounds like you, you might want to check out the Logitech Harmony Hub. This unique device is compatible with over 270,000 entertainment and smart home devices so you can enjoy single-touch control with your favorite brands, right from your smartphone (or the Logitech remote, but for today we’re just going to focus on the app for your smartphone). Through the Logitech Harmony App you can change channels and volume, program favorites, control lights and other smart devices, and build multi-device experiences called Activities. In fact, almost all of the items we’re talking about on this list* are compatible with the Logitech Harmony Hub, so it really is a one-stop-shop for home Smart Home control. It is also compatible with multiple Smart TV’s, Smart Plugs, Bluetooth devices (including gaming consoles), and more!

Make your morning routine a breeze with Harmony Activities. Create a routine that turns on your tv with the news, raises your lights to 100%, and lifts your shades all by tapping or saying “Good Morning”. When it’s time to leave for the day, connect your August Smart Lock to your Logitech Harmony Hub, and set the automation for the door to lock 2 minutes after you leave, so you have peace of mind throughout the day that your home is secure. There are endless ways you can automate your home with the Logitech Harmony Hub, and you can control it all from your fingertips on your phone! This is the ultimate way to bring all of your smart devices into one easy to control space, making you just as smart as your home.

*Not compatible with the Kohler Veil, U by Moen, LG Smart Refrigerator, or GE Smart Oven

Get it Here: Philips Hue Lights

Now, there are a few smart lighting options on the market right now, but in our opinion Philips is one of the best. Hue is the most well-established, well-developed, and well-connected brand on the market right now, and is comparable with Alexa, Siri, Google Home, Nest, Logitech, and more! The lights come in a standard white, or a rainbow hue bulb, and are available in traditional bulb form, light bar form (one really cool feature of the Hue Play is that it has an HDMI sync which syncs the colors with whatever’s on your TV screen).

Hue lights wirelessly communicate to a bridge that plugs into your router, but once this is set up you can control all of your lights directly from your phone. You can set up specific rooms, light scenes, automations, hook them up to a motion sensor, and even control them with your voice (if you have a Google Home, Amazon Alexa, or HomePod). Want to wake up with light at 8:30? No problem! Set an automation right from your Home App to have the lights either turn on right at that time or set a routine in the Hue app that will mimic the sunrise and gradually make the light brighter until the set time you want to actually wake up when it will be at its brightest (it’s actually been proven that waking up gradually like this can help reduce blood pressure, heart rate, and stress!). Have a sleeping baby in the other room, but need to set a timer? Have your hue lights flash at the end of your timer rather than an alarm going off! The possibilities are endless with smart light integration, and they can help set a relaxing, or invigorating, ambiance in your home any time of day.

Serena by Lutron Shades
Get it Here: Serena by Lutron Shades

Not one for waking up to artificial light in the mornings, but don’t want to get out of bed to open your shades? Don’t worry there is a solution for you with Luton Shades, but particularly the Serena by Lutron shades. These shades are compatible though Caseta by Lutron on the Logitech Harmony Hub, but also have their own app and can be controlled directly from your phone. You can set schedules for when you want your shades, or blinds, to raise or lower based on the time of day, or manually control your window treatments. While this may seem like one of our simpler smart home devices on our list, it’s sometimes the simplest things that make the biggest impact on our daily routines.

Amazon Echo Show 10 (3rd Generation)
Get it Here: Amazon Echo Show 10 (3rd Generation)

By now we are sure you know what an Amazon Echo is, considering we are now on the 4th generation of the Echo Dot, and the third generation of the Echo Show, not to mention the many other Echo products that have been on the market in the last 5 years including the Echo Plus, the Echo Spot, the Echo Flex, and the Echo Studio. Despite the pretty much household name of Amazon Echo, and it’s soothing AI Alexa, the newest Amazon Echo Show 10 (3rd Generation) is something worth taking note of. While it has all of the features we have come to know, love, and expect from the traditional Echo devices like voice control, music functionality, video functionality (only on the previous Show generations), among others, the Echo Show 10 is the first Echo device on the market that actually has motion tracking technology. Not only can you video call on the device, but if you are moving around, let’s say cooking dinner, and you want to call Mom, the Echo Show 10 will actually track your movement around the space to keep you in frame!

It’s the perfect kitchen companion allowing you to get unit conversions, set timers, add to your grocery list, and cook along to your favorite cooking shows with ease. But the Echo Show 10 can also grant peace of mind while you’re away from home, by accessing the built-in camera to remotely monitor your home anytime, or by asking Alexa to show you security cameras, control your lights, and adjust thermostats.

Kohler Veil
Get it Here: Kohler Veil™ Comfort Height™ Intelligent Toilet
If the rest of your home can be smart, then so can your bathroom! But we can almost guarantee you probably hadn’t considered an intelligent toilet before, or maybe didn’t even know an intelligent toilet existed. Well we are here to inform you that they do, and that they are actually not only very cool, but the Kohler Veil™ Comfort Height™ Intelligent toilet is also simply beautiful as well. Sculpted with flowing and balanced curves, the Veil® one-piece toilet pairs bold minimalist style with the comfort of personal cleansing. This particular toilet is 17” tall as opposed to the standard 14.5”, making sitting and standing more comfortable and easier for adults, particularly the elderly. But those are just the design features, once you get into the actual functionality of this toilet, you will realize it is the Cadillac of fixtures. With a built-in bidet feature that has an adjustable stainless steel wand for precision, front and rear warm water for personal cleansing, and a warm air drying system with adjustable temperature settings, your bathroom experience will never be the same!

Don’t think the luxury stops there though! The Kohler Veil™ Comfort Height™ toilet also features an automatic deodorization system, a heated seat, and (coolest of all) a self-cleaning function that uses UV light and electrolyzed water systems to sanitize the wand surfaces. No need for a night light in the bathroom either, this toilet features an LED light for those late night trips as well as a quite-close lid so you don’t have to worry about waking up anyone else! If you’re looking for the ultimate smart-bathroom experience- the Kohler Veil™ Comfort Height™ Intelligent toilet is our recommendation!

U by Moen
Get it Here: U by Moen Shower System

Last on our list (yet no less important) is the U by Moen shower system. This high-tech shower system is actually voice activated and compatible with Alexa, Apple HomeKit, and Google Home. You can create a preset so that your shower not only starts at a certain time, but starts at the exact temperature you want! No more cold, rushed, morning showers- only perfectly timed, perfectly temped showers from now on. You can also set a timer for your shower, so not only will you never be running late to work again, but you will also save water (and save money) because you’ll have your routine perfectly timed so there’s never wasted time- or wasted water. The Moen App will even tell you when your shower is ready according to your custom-made preferences, so you can stay in bed those extra few minutes every day. This shower system hooks up directly to your wifi so you can remotely start and control your shower from anywhere in your home over your local WiFi network through your smartphone.

You can customize your U by Moen shower system to include 2 or 4 outlets, based on your preferred shower layout. The 2 outlet system can be a combination of an overhead rain shower and a handheld sprayer, or an overhead rain shower and three multi-function flush mount body sprayers, while the 4 outlet system can be a combination of an overhead rain shower, a handheld sprayer, and four multi-function flush mount body sprayers, or an overhead rain shower, a handheld sprayer, and four single-function exposed body sprays. Each system comes with an external panel with manual controls as well.

The goal of renovation and remodeling is to ensure satisfaction upon completion of your project. Construction can be very frustrating, and without a professional contractor, things can go wrong.

About Author

Perry Hiiman

Perry Hiiman was born and raised in Tel Aviv, Israel. He planted his roots in Manhattan, New York in 1992. A few years later, Perry met his wife and had three lovely daughters. Perry has always been excited about home improvement and design. He has been in the service industry for over 25 years. Perry and his partner founded New York Kitchen and Bath in 2001. They pioneered the One Stop Shop concept of home improvement and design firms. In addition, Perry is a New York State licensed contractor, OSHA certified, and a New York State licensed mold assessor. He specializes in custom design and is genuinely passionate about what he does—bringing people’s dream projects to life.

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