The Comcast Mobile App offers a lot of what users have been clamoring for from the popular cable service, but falls just short of being great. You'll now be able to access Comcast e-mails and digital voice mails right from your iPhone, using a touch interface much like Apple's e-mail and voice mail experience, but in a unified in-box for both. An intuitive, tabbed interface lets you quickly switch between new e-mail and voice messages. A separate Digital Voice section offers more options, listing missed calls, outgoing calls, and voice mail. There is also an included address book … Read more
NISKAYUNA, N.Y.--Modernizing the electricity grid to be a more efficient and reliable smart grid will bring a number of societal benefits. That is, if consumers are up for it.
General Electric on Tuesday hosted a symposium of utility industry executives at its research lab here, where the company showed off appliances due next year that communicate with smart meters to take advantage of cheaper electricity rates.
GE also showed off the Home Energy Manager, a device that gives consumers more details on energy consumption and a way to program their appliance preferences. For example, a person can allow … Read more
One of the most dangerous things about shopping online is the fact that you have to enter your credit card information. This is when malicious software like Keylogger can steal your private data without you even knowing it.
Even if your computer is safe, entering all that info can be tedious. Luckily, there's now a way to eliminate the hassle of payment entry and ensure the safety of your computer, too.
The catch is, it costs $99.95.
I got into the whole "smart house," home automation (HA) thing about 11 years ago when reading about how I could get some of the lights inside and outside my house to be controlled automatically. I did some research, and a friend recommended an installer. The timing was perfect, because we were renovating a 100-year-old house that was badly in need of everything. We stripped it to the bones, which was a real treat when it came to running Cat 5 and video cable throughout the whole place. This was before Wi-Fi, before iPods, before LCD TV screens! … Read more
NISKAYUNA, N.Y.--General Electric unveiled a project at its research labs that will let homeowners cut annual energy consumption to zero by 2015.
These "net-zero energy homes" will combine on-site power generation through solar panels or wind turbines with energy-efficient appliances and on-site storage. Consumers will get detailed energy data and potentially control appliances with Home Energy Manager, a device that is expected to cost between $200 and $250, according to GE executives at a smart grid media day.
GE is piloting the in-home products this year and expects to have the appliances and energy display available … Read more
Here we go again with another installment of the weekly Crave giveaway. This week's gadget: the HP MediaSmart Server LX195, a great network storage and backup device for home users.
In case you're wondering what CNET really thinks about it, CNET editor Dong Ngo recently gave the LX195 an Editors' Choice award. He says, "The device offers stellar performance, and great backup and remote access options for a reasonable price." (Read the full review of the HP MediaSmart Server LX195.)
Normally, HP's MediaSmart Server LX195 costs about $400, but you have the chance to get … Read more
Yet again, the tech industry has a buzzword everyone seems to be using but few really understand.
The smart grid follows the footsteps of the Internet and the interstate highway system--they are giant investments in infrastructure. It's not so much a single thing as it is a goal to give the electricity system a digital makeover to make it more efficient and reliable.
Governments and utilities around the world are devoting billions of dollars to lay new transmission lines and make the electricity network operate more like the computer networks we access every day. Big tech vendors and hundreds … Read more
Home-area network company Control4 wants you to control your energy consumption and home entertainment from the same box.
The Salt Lake City-based company on Wednesday said that it has raised $17.3 million to fund its expansion into energy monitoring and displays. The company plans to introduce its "energy controller," a thermostat that can connect to smart meters, early next year.
One of the investors is the venture arm of Best Buy, which indicated earlier this week that it is looking at offering products for managing climate-control systems in stores.
Control4 is best known for its products for … Read more
Imagine a refrigerator smart enough to cut your electricity bills.
Smart-grid start-up Tendril and General Electric later this year will test a smart-grid system that will allow GE's networked home appliances to take advantage of cheaper electricity rates, the companies announced Wednesday.
The joint development deal calls for GE to speak to Tendril's smart-grid software in a range of GE appliances--dishwashers, washing machines, refrigerators, and water heaters--over Zigbee wireless networks.
The integration will allow consumers to control their appliances from different points, such a Web browser, iPhone, or in-home display.