LAS VEGAS — From toilets to mattresses, there’s no shortage of smart home devices that will debut at CES 2019. But of all the flashy and expensive new gadgets, an inexpensive sensor called RoomMe may offer the fastest route to complete home automation.
With RoomMe, you can create personalized home automation profiles for each person in your home. Simply walk into the room and RoomMe will adjust the lights, thermostat, music, and even television to suit your personal preferences.
The RoomMe sensor looks like a smoke detector and is about as easy to install. Simply attach a sensor to the entrance of each room you want to automate and use the RoomMe app and your smartphone to sync the sensors. Since the sensors connect via Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) instead of Wi-Fi, all automation tasks are done locally through your smartphone to prevent any online data sharing.
Once you have set up the initial network, you will need to associate and authorize your current smart home devices to the RoomMe network. It’s relatively straightforward, but if you have a lot of smart devices, this step can take a bit of time.
After you’ve paired your devices, it’s time to add users. RoomMe allows you to add up to 16 individual users. It should be noted that every user must have a smartphone, so young children may not be able to create a personalized profile.
RoomMe allows you to define each user as standard or master. A standard user can configure individual automation profiles for each room in the house. Master users can do the same but have the added luxury of having first priority when entering a room with a standard user.
Once the users are set up, the rest of the process is fairly straightforward. Each user simply has to calibrate their phone with the network of sensors and create preferences for each room. In addition to setting general preferences like thermostat temperature, you can also create time-specific preferences for different times of the day.
We tested RoomMe for ourselves a few days before CES. When we entered a room with a primary user, the lights dimmed light blue as the thermostat lowered to 65 degrees. We then tried RoomMe with several users in a room and found everything to work perfectly.
RoomMe is expected to start shipping by the end of March. You’ll need to buy at least two sensors to get started, but you’ll probably want to buy one for each room in order to fully automate your home. Pricing has yet to be announced, although a representative told PCMag the sensors will likely be around $ 70.
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