Tado Smart AC Control

Smart cooling from dumb air conditioners with Tado

BERLIN -- After finding success making smart thermostats for European homes, German startup Tado is expanding to the US. The product making its way across the pond isn't a thermostat, but rather, a $199 Wi-Fi accessory for nonconnected air conditioner units. Place Tado in the air conditioner's line of sight, and it'll command the unit using the same infrared connection the remote uses. From there, you'll be able to control it remotely through Tado's app on Android, iOS or Windows devices, or program it to turn on and off automatically at specific times, or as you come and go.

The device was on full display at the IFA tech conference in Germany, where Tado announced it'd soon be getting its own channel on IFTTT , the popular online automation service. That opens the door for crafty home automation enthusiasts to sync their air conditioners up with other IFTTT-compatible smart home tech.

Small, flat and white, Tado looks a bit like a newfangled thermostat, complete with attractive LED animations and touch button controls. You can mount it to the wall or sit it on a shelf, just so long as it stays plugged in and in direct sight of your AC unit.

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