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Smart home technology can make your life easier and more enjoyable.

Although all these new smart house technologies can seem daunting and complicated at first, it has become much easier to accept the artificially intelligent assistants (and voice control) that have been introduced.

This is a list containing the most essential smart home devices that work with smart-home technologies.

Top 10 Smart Home Technologies Google Nest WiFi

Works with: Google Home

If you are looking to make your home smarter, or if your smartphone can be used in every room, a mesh Wi-Fi router is a great choice.

The mesh Wi-Fi router is made up of one or more hubs that you can plug into your house. They eliminate dead zones and transmit Wi Fi signals evenly throughout the home, no matter how thick or complicated the layout.

The Nest Wi-Fi from Google is a wonderful addition to any smart house. Google’s Home app allows you to control everything using your smartphone. There are also parental controls that let you turn off your children’s access.

This is great for getting everyone at the table on time. This is one the most useful smart home devices. It can work with smart home technologies such as artificial intelligence.

Abode Smart Security Kit

Uses Alexa, Google Home, and HomeKit

Adobe Smart Security Kit is one of the most popular smart home devices. Abode, a reliable DIY security system for your home with unlimited smart house features, is an excellent choice.

Also read: Best Oculus Quest 2 Accessories To Bring Home (Its Upgrade Time For Meta Quest 2)

Arlo Video Doorbell

Works with: Alexa, Google Home

Arlo Video Doorbell is another smart home device. Smart doorbells use a microphone, camera, microphone, motion sensor and an internet connection to detect visitors and activity at your door. The camera can record a message or view live video from your smartphone.

It works like voicemail for your front door. Arlo Video Doorbells are a great option, as they offer a wide range of high-end capabilities. It distinguishes between people, animals, cars, parcels, and at a very low cost.

Nest Protect Smoke & CO

Uses: Google Assistant

Smart smoke alarms are one of the best home automation devices. Although it isn’t the most exciting device, it is one of the most important because it could save your home.

Because it’s packed with smarts and sensors, the Nest Protect Smart Smoke & CO Alarm may be the best gadget. It can wirelessly link with other alarms to activate them all in case of an emergency.

Also read: The Top 10 Digital Process Automation (DPA) Tools

Philips Hue, Lutron Caseta

Works with: Alexa, Google Home, HomeKit

Smart lighting is the star of the smart house. It’s simple, fun, and very beneficial. Lutron Caseta’s range works with nearly any wiring configuration and is compatible with Alexa, Google and HomeKit. Instead of relying on Wi-Fi at home, it uses Lutron’s wireless protocol (through an hub).

The smart bulb series by Philips Hue is the smartest, most reliable and cost-effective alternative. This extensible smart lighting system features bulbs and fixtures that can be used in any situation.

It also includes wireless switches for physical control when necessary and motion sensors that adjust lighting according to the time of day. This is a smart home device.

TP Link Kasa Mini, Eve Energy

Uses Alexa and Google Assistant

This extensible smart lighting system includes bulbs and fixtures that can be used in any situation. It also features wireless switches to allow physical control when necessary and motion sensors that adjust lighting according to the time of day.

The TP-Link Kasa series smart plugs from TP Link are a great choice if you don’t need a separate smart house system to manage them.

Also read: Top 10 Programming Languages for Kids to learn

Sonos One

Works with: Alexa, Google Assistant, Apple AirPlay 2

Because it can be used with both Amazon’s Alexa or Google’s Google Assistant, the Sonos One smart speaker is among the best. You can choose between these voice assistants. It has amazing sound quality and can connect to Sonos’ wider world of wireless music.

It can also be used with Apple’s AirPlay system. This allows you to stream music from your iPhone or iPad directly and then group it with other AirPlay2-compatible speakers. This smart home device is also available.

Google Nest Hub Max

Uses: Google Assistant

Because it packs a lot of functionality into a 10-inch display, the Nest Hub Max is a smart screen. The Nest Hub Max can identify who is using it, and provide customized information without you needing to say anything.

It also has a camera built in that doubles as a security camera. This takes the smart speaker to the next level. It also makes use of smart home technologies such as artificial Intelligence.

Nest Learning Thermostat

Works with: Alexa, Google Assistant

Nest Learning thermostat now can regulate hot water. A Heat Link is available that connects to your boiler to communicate with the thermostat and allows you to turn on the heat, adjust the heat and set an intelligent schedule for your boiler.

Also read: Top 7 Work Operating Systems of 2023

Roomba I3+

The Roomba i3+ vacuum cleaner is affordable and self-emptying. It returns to the external bin when its onboard bin gets full to collect all trash. Instead of emptying it twice per week like non-emptying robots, you will only need to empty it once every three months.

Also, the i7+ model is a good choice. Because it can do clever tasks like cleaning the kitchen and vacuuming the living room, the i7+ model is more expensive than the i7. You can use only a few words to instruct Alexa and Google to clean, pause or return home. This smart home device is also one of its best.

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Seven Apps That Make It Much Easier To Work Remotely

The internet has transformed the way we live and communicate with each other, which means it’s likely you have colleagues and clients spread across the world. With the right phone apps, you can make sure this geographical diversity doesn’t hurt productivity, and ensure that everyone on your team is on the same page (sometimes literally).

These collaboration apps don’t just have to be for the workplace, either—you may also find them useful for planning events or sharing information with family and friends.

1. Google Drive

Google Drive is free for Android and iOS.

2. Notion

If you’ve never heard of Notion, now you know what it looks like. Notion

One of the newer arrivals in the collaboration app space, Notion doesn’t have too many restrictions. In fact, its interface largely stays out of the way, leaving you (and your team) to use it however you like: as a free-form notepad, a place to manage tasks, a document library, or whatever else you need.

Notion is free or from $4 a month for Android and iOS.

3. Dropbox Paper

Dropbox Paper is, in some ways, a cut-down version of Google Docs. But that simplicity isn’t necessarily a negative—it makes it easier to focus on what you’re actually collaborating on. The app is essentially a free-form group notebook and document editor, giving you and your team space to work together on text, images, timetables, and more.

Dropbox Paper is free for Android and iOS.

4. Trello

Use Trello to keep your team on track… or to plan a new kitchen. Trello

Trello is one of those apps that looks pretty straightforward on the surface, but gets more complex (and useful) as you dig deeper. It’s also quite hard to explain, because at its core it’s just a bunch of cards sorted into a series of columns—but you can use those columns and cards in a host of different ways, depending on what your team needs.

Perhaps the most common way people use Trello is to keep track of projects: who’s doing what, how far along each task is, when deadlines are approaching, and so on. Users can tag cards with labels, due dates, usernames, and more, and if you upgrade from the free plan, you’ll get extras like board templates, app integration, and custom backgrounds.

Trello is free or from $10 a month for Android and iOS.

5. Evernote

Evernote has been around in some form since 2000, but it remains one of the best cross-platform note-taking and collaboration apps available. Evernote lets you easily and intuitively combine text, images, videos, links, lists, and more into a series of digital notebooks that can be tagged and categorized as you see fit.

Evernote is free or from $5 a month for Android and iOS.

6. Slack

Toby had better talk about office pets in that culture meeting. Slack

A staple of offices around the world, Slack is on a mission to make it easier for teams to work together, without getting weighed down by endless email chains or round-the-clock meetings. The strength of Slack lies not in what it is—a real-time chat client, basically—but in how well it implements that idea.

Slack is free or from $6.67 a month for Android and iOS.

7. Google Keep

We started with Google and we’ll end with Google (we told you it was good at web apps). Google Keep looks simple on the surface, but it’s actually quite a sophisticated note-taking and collaboration app, enabling you to share photos, text, lists, and links with other people. If you need to, you can quickly convert Notes into files for Google Docs, too.

When it comes to managing notes, tou’ve got plenty of flexibility. They can be color-coded, linked to reminders, and tagged with custom labels for easier organization (like work, family, or shopping). Sharing a note with one or more people is as simple as tapping the Collaborator option and entering email addresses.

Google Keep is free for Android and iOS.

Here Are 10 Chrome Flags That Will Improve Your Web

Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority

Chrome is known for its simplicity and speed. Despite this, there are a lot of extra tools under the hood. This includes several experimental features that can be accessed through special Chrome Flags.

Considering these are all test features that might not even make it to the stable version of Chrome, bugs are expected. Nonetheless, if you are willing to go through the occasional hiccup, some enable an improved browsing experience. Let’s take a look at some of our favorites.

Also read: How to download and install Chrome

What is a Chrome Flag?

Chrome Flags are experimental features Google hasn’t released yet, but you can access and try. Just remember these aren’t ready for an official release just yet. This means they may not work very well all of the time. You may encounter the occasional hiccup, bug, or crash.

How to access the Chrome Flags page:

Open Chrome.

Type the following in the address bar: “chrome://flags/” (without quotation marks).

Press Enter.

You are in!

There are two primary tabs on the page: Available and Unavailable. Some of these experimental features are only available on specific devices. You can’t use features made for Android on devices like a laptop, for example.

How to enable a Chrome Flag:

Once you find yourself within the Chrome Flags page, go ahead and search for the Chrome Flag you want to try out.

Select Enabled.

You’ll need to relaunch Chrome most of the time. Hit Relaunch if the option shows up.

Note: These instructions were put together using a Pixel 7 Pro running Android 13. These steps are identical across all Chrome browsers, though. The same steps will work on desktop and iOS.

Are Chrome Flags safe?

Once in the Chrome Flags settings, you will see a warning message telling you about the dangers of using them. This is because experimental features can cause issues and hiccups in the browser. They are usually not too unstable, but some can be. Regardless, you can easily disable them.

How to disable Chrome Flags:

Access the Chrome Flags settings as directed in the previous section.

Find the experimental Chrome Flag you want to disable.

Select the drop-down menu and select Disabled.

Alternatively, you can press the button in the top-right corner that says Reset all to disable all of them.

You’ll need to relaunch Chrome most of the time. Hit Relaunch if the option shows up.

The best Chrome Flags:

Editor’s note: We’ll regularly update this list with new Chrome Flags. All instructions in this post were put together using a custom PC running Windows 11 and Chrome version 107.0.5304.107.

Smooth Scrolling

Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority

Ever notice your scrolling stutter or that it can get a bit sluggish? There could be many reasons it’s happening, but this Chrome Flag will likely improve the situation. Search for “Smooth Scrolling” in the search bar and enable the feature. It’s a great feature Android users should enable, but you can also use it on Windows, Linux, and Chrome OS.

Auto Dark Mode for Web Contents

Dark Mode is pretty cool, both aesthetically and for eye comfort reasons. If you are also a fan of it, you want all website content to support it. Sadly, not all websites cooperate, but a secondary option forces the option on all websites.

Open the Chrome Flags page and search for “Auto Dark Mode for Web Contents.” Enable the feature through the drop-down menu next to it.

Show autofill predictions

Nobody likes filling out forms, so Google simplifies this process using autofill. Still annoying? You can automatically have Chrome autofill form information by enabling the “Show autofill predictions” feature.

Search for “Show Autofill Predictions” and enable the feature using the drop-down menu to the right.

Live Caption

Some video players and websites offer captions, but this isn’t a universal feature. Those who want transcripts for all recognized words in media can use the Live Caption Chrome Flag.

Search for “Live Caption” and enable it.

GPU Rasterization

Is Chrome simply not fast enough for you? We know how you can harness the full power of your computer to speed things up. There’s a trick, though; you need to have a dedicated GPU for this one to make any improvements to Chrome’s performance. GPU Rasterization allows Chrome to take some of the workload off the CPU and have your GPU take care of it.

Here’s how to do it. Search for “GPU rasterization” and enable the feature using the drop-down menu.

Next: How to speed up Chrome

FAQs

Using Chrome flags is safe, but it can make your experience a bit buggy. The team also warns you could lose data and compromise privacy. This is just Google being careful, though. The worse that can usually happen is that you’ll need to relaunch Chrome and turn off a Chrome flag, if anything goes wrong.

Chrome flags are experimental features the Google team is testing. The team will make these official Chrome features once they are in good working order, if they are deemed worthy. This isn’t always the case, though. Additionally, Chrome flags are often killed.

You can use Chrome flags on both mobile and desktop browsers, but not all Chrome flags are available on every device. Some are desktop or mobile-specific. However, Chrome will separate unavailable flags and put them into the Unavailable tab.

Are you looking for other Chrome tips to improve your experience? We have more content to help you out. Let’s start with a list of our best Chrome tips and tricks.

Top Smart Home And Homekit Tech Of Ces 2024 (Video)

There’s a very clear message delivered on the CES 2024 show floor: Smart home tech is definitely a thing. There is a ton of tech/accessories being showcased at CES that are designed to make your home life easier through connectivity. We’ve roamed the show floor searching high and low to bring you a roundup of some of the best smart home tech that was announced…

Most of the smart home tech that we’ve seen is controlled via apps that are available for iOS and Android, but there were a few that also featured integration with Apple HomeKit which will allow you to control these smart devices with your voice via Siri. Either way, it’s exciting to see what’s coming to market over the next year and we hope to see all of this available in the near future.

Check out our “top smart home tech” video below:

First up we stopped by Belkin and discovered a handful of new Wemo devices that work alongside other accessories in that lineup. Belkin is doing some really cool stuff with Wemo and launching a window/door sensor, keyring sensor, motion sensor, and an alarm sensor. There are even some home appliances like a coffee maker and crockpot that are smart and connected within the Wemo family. If you’re a fan of Belkin’s Wemo devices, you’ll definitely want to take a closer look.

Along our smart home journey, we also came across Ring, which is a video doorbell with one-way video and two-way audio communication. This will deliver a video stream from your front door when someone rings the doorbell. As mentioned, you can also communicate with the person on the other side which can be helpful in many different situations.

A lot of these devices make your life easier, but what about keeping you safe? Well First Alert recently introduced the OneLink Smoke and Carbon Monoxide detector (available now for $109) and we got a closer look during ShowStoppers. This smart smoke alarm features integration with Apple HomeKit and has apps available for iOS and Android. The best part is, you don’t have to worry about changing its batteries. First Alert says its product’s battery will last for a solid 10 years.

Kwikset also launched a companion subscription service called Kevo Plus to go along with its smart lock. The service provides you with a free secured router that creates the cloud connection and allows you to utilize the smart lock features from anywhere in the world. Along with that you’ll get unlimited free “Anytime Keys,” and all of this can be added to an existing Kevo device without purchasing a new lock. Kevo has also been integrated with Nest thermostat and allows for temperature-based user profiles depending on who unlocks the doors.

HomeKit seemed to be a big theme in the smart home category this year. iDevices gave us a closer look at its new connected plug called Switch. This features full HomeKit integration which will allow you to control the device using Siri on an iOS device. iHome has also joined the HomeKit party with its SmartPlug featuring similar functionality, and we even have Elgato on board with the Eve lineup of connected devices.

For more details and a closer look at all of the new smart home and HomeKit devices mentioned, check out the above video. It looks like technology is moving towards making smart house technology very consumer friendly and reasonably affordable. We’re excited to see what else is around the corner in 2024, but for now everything is off to a good start.

9to5Mac’s CES 2024 coverage brought to you by:

FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links. More.

Top 10 Web 3.0 Cryptocurrencies That Will Take Over Bitcoin In Future

Web 3.0 cryptocurrencies are decentralized projects that use smart contracts and automate transactions over the internet.

At present, Blockchain technology is gaining heavy momentum and it is one of the most special areas wherein it is speculated to show progress is the internet. As Web 3.0 networks will operate through decentralized protocols — the founding blocks of blockchain and crypto technology — we can expect to see a strong convergence and symbiotic relationship between these three technologies and other fields. Web 3.0 cryptocurrencies are decentralized projects that use smart contracts and automate transactions over the internet. This article features the top Web 3.0 cryptocurrencies that will take over Bitcoin in the future.

Helium

Helium is a decentralized blockchain-powered network for IoT devices that utilizes a global network of low-energy wireless hotspots to broadcast data through radio waves to be recorded in the blockchain. The network uses a new algorithm, known as the proof-of-coverage consensus, to validate that the hotspots are providing legitimate wireless coverage. 

Chainlink

LINK is a blockchain abstraction layer that enables universally connected smart contracts. Not only does it present the ideal combination of a project with the right technology behind it, but it also has enough resources for further development. The best part: Chainlink possesses an excellent community. It is one of the best Web 3.0 cryptocurrencies that will take over Bitcoin in the future.

Filecoin (FIL)

Filecoin is like the filing cabinet for Web 3.0. It is a decentralized storage network that serves as a secure alternative to centralized cloud storage and a passive way of making money. Filecoin can be used to store almost any type of data, be it audio files, videos, still images, or text. It also claims to be secure enough to store more sensitive information like private company information and records.

Audius

Audius is a decentralized music streaming platform that aligns the interest of artists, fans, and node operators with its native token, AUDIO. The token can be used for governance, staking, and incentivizing artists’ earnings. Audius also rewards its creators by featuring their music in the weekly trending lists. It is one of the best Web 3.0 cryptocurrencies that will take over Bitcoin in the future.

Flux (FLUX) 

Flux aims to provide the groundwork for the developers to build out this new iteration of the web. With the help of Flux, users can develop Web 3.0 applications and decentralized projects and then deploy them across various networks. This becomes especially efficient with the help of FluxOS – a decentralized operating system made just for Flux users. It also offers blockchain-as-a-service (BaaS), which is very similar to SaaS.

Theta (THETA)

Theta aims to be the next-generation entertainment and video platform whose blockchain is powered by its users. It aims to facilitate the delivery of decentralized video for users, with enterprise validator nodes from Sony, Google, Samsung, and other companies. It is one of the best Web 3.0 cryptocurrencies that will take over Bitcoin in the future.

ZCash (ZEC)

ZCash is one of the first privacy-built cryptocurrencies, which was developed by a group of scientists from John Hopkins, MIT, and other eminent academic and scientific institutions. Interestingly, this privacy coin was originally built on the Bitcoin codebase with the only difference of being a privacy feature option.

Livepeer

Livepeer is a decentralized video streaming network built on the Ethereum blockchain. It is the secure and most cost-effective participation of the various actors in the streaming ecosystem. It mainly addresses two goals-distribution of real-time video and encouraging network participation. It is one of the best Web 3.0 cryptocurrencies that will take over Bitcoin in the future. 

Kadena

Kadena is a scalable PoW layer-one blockchain protocol that is stated to be capable of processing up to 4,80,000 transactions per second (TPS), thanks to the use of branded chains. Unlike the top PoW cryptocurrency Bitcoin, Kadena offers smart contract capabilities similar to those in Ethereum.

Kusama

Investing in Kusama is like taking a detour via Polkadot and is set to carry out due to its proven records for the success of parachains. Just like DOT, developers compete to get a spot on the Kusama network through parachain auctions. Experts consider Kusama a profitable short-term investment as the network is older and stronger. It is one of the best Web 3.0 cryptocurrencies that will take over Bitcoin in the future.

Disruptive Technologies That Affect Desktop Linux

Perhaps what has given desktop Linux its biggest shot in the arm is the evolution of various disruptive technologies that have, by design, made desktop Linux adoption just that much easier.

The following are some of the most disruptive examples of disruptive technology on the Linux platform – including current technologies and those whose adoption is coming just around the corner:

WINE – Using Windows applications without needing to fall into the Windows licensing trap. Thanks to WINE, end users on the Linux platform are able to run a number of Windows applications without needing to utilize any sort of Windows emulators of any kind.

How is it disruptive? WINE’s very mission of allowing users to run software on their terms, regardless of the license that the software happens to use is particularly disruptive. Closed source, open source, whatever – it just works. What makes WINE such a killer app is allowing Linux users to use their existing Windows software without needing to purchase a copy of Windows to be run inside some sort of virtual machine.

There’s no question that this disruptive technology has been a boon to desktop Linux adoption.

NDISWrapper – I appreciate and admire the hard work in the NDISWrapper project’s attempt to support made-for-Windows wireless adapters. Unfortunately, NDISWrapper is also lending support to the enemy – by supporting made-for-Windows wireless devices. These wireless devices are produced by vendors who have worked very hard at being as uncooperative with the Linux community as possible.

Using ever-changing chipset revision numbers for the same device models, refusing to release any code to the community for Linux development, I am astonished by anyone foolish enough to further enable this kind of behavior.

How is it disruptive? NDISWrapper as a project, provides a means of making incompatible wireless cards compatible with Linux, albeit with mixed results. I have used the NDISWrapper utility both successfully and unsuccessfully in the past. It has allowed a fair percentage of desktop Linux users to use their existing wireless hardware in lieu of supporting the few wireless vendors that actually provide made-for-Linux wireless cards. I do not support NDISWrapper in any way, even considering the honorable intentions of its developers.

Virtual Machines – VMWare, Parallels, etc. Today’s OS emulation tools have truly picked up on instances where access to another OS is a must. For Both OS X and Linux users, being able to emulate a Windows desktop from within the host OS environment is of huge benefit to the end user.

Speaking for myself, having access to the Windows desktop without needing to create a separate partition for it in a literal sense on my existing hard drive means I’m not jeopardizing an existing boot record should something go wrong during my partitioning or installation of the second OS.

How is it disruptive? Having the ability to run an operating system from within another one is quite powerful. When executed right, it allows the end user to break free of any platform restriction issues they may have faced previously.

Unlike WINE listed above, using a guest OS means there are almost no restrictions set forth due to compatibility with the software being used. While some applications, such as those requiring DirectX, might not work well in a emulation environment, generally speaking this is not the case when using software run with a virtual machine.

Fluendo restricted codecs – Up until recently, most users were really left to their own devices when it came to finding and installing what is referred to as “restricted codecs” on the desktop Linux platform. Here in the U.S., certain codecs, such as various Windows Media codecs, MP3, and other formats created a lot of problems from a distribution angle, since it’s widely perceived that a fee must be paid ahead of time.

Thanks to Fluendo’s Web store, desktop Linux users have a choice if using restricted codecs is something they wish to pay for.

How is this disruptive? By providing users a choice of purchasing a license to use these restricted codecs in a way that’s safe for U.S. distribution, everyone wins. The disruption begins when users find they have a means of using restricted codecs that are Linux-compatible and don’t present any licensing/legal concerns.

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