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Belkin adds new sensors to WeMo's smart home lineup

Due out later this year, the new WeMo sensors will expand the capabilities of Belkin's smart home platform.

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Belkin is continuing to grow the WeMo ecosystem of smart gadgets, with plans to add four new sensors to the mix in 2015. All four are expected to arrive by the year's end with pricing yet to come, and will require the WeMo Link plug-in hub that's currently sold with WeMo LED Lighting starter kits to serve as a translator between your home Wi-Fi network and their native tongue, Zigbee.

The first of the group is a new wireless motion sensor designed to serve the same purpose as the current, wired model , albeit with greater placement flexibility. Belkin claims that the WeMo Room Motion Sensor has a thirty foot range and a ninety degree field of view, and also that it's immune to false alarms triggered by pets, thanks to an infrared sensor that reads heat signatures.

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The WeMo Alarm Sensor. Belkin

Next up: an alarm sensor that listens for the specific frequency of smoke and burglar alarms. In the event that one of them gets triggered, the WeMo Alarm Sensor should hear it, with push notifications or automated responses to follow. That could open up the possibility of adding some retroactive smarts to existing, non-connected security systems -- if it works reliably.

Another addition due in the coming year is a WeMo Keychain Sensor. Clip it to your keys, drop it in your kid's bookbag, or attach it to your pet's collar, and your home network will be able to detect as it comes and goes. There's also a button hidden on each sensor that's capable of triggering your WeMo recipes whenever pressed, though presumably, you'd need to be within range of your home network in order for that to work.

Finally, Belkin will also offer a WeMo Door and Window Sensor capable of detecting the openings and closings of doors, windows, cabinets, safes, or anything else you stick it to.

None of the sensors are groundbreaking -- Quirky debuted a similar suite of sensors for the Wink network in November of 2014, and SmartThings has a nearly identical gadget lineup that's been around for even longer.

That might largely be the point, though. WeMo's current product lineup is compatible with SmartThings, but, perhaps tellingly, not with the more recently established Wink network. With dedicated sensors of its own, Belkin might be looking to continue a trend towards a more independent WeMo ecosystem in 2015.

Something else to watch for in 2015 is " Echo Technology ," of which Belkin offered us an early glimpse alongside the new sensors. With Echo, Belkin promises you'll be able to monitor your entire home's water and power consumption with device-by-device specificity right in the WeMo app -- and you'll do so using just a single sensor each. It doesn't sound like Echo would arrive until the end of 2015 at the very earliest, but it still certainly has us intrigued.

Belkin WeMo Water and Power with Echo Technology