Hey gang, Valkor here. While many folks are gearing up for Halloween, in the tech world, they’re more looking forward to “Back to School” and Christmas. And one company in particular – iHome, has the stuff to tackle both seasons and beyond. Last week I got the chance to hang with iHome and its reps in NYC, who was showcasing many products that could adorn your home in the very near future.
iHome iBN350 – We’ve checked out and even reviewed our share of wireless charging here at TOV, and thankfully I came prepared with my Nexus 6 in tow to test out iHome’s latest alarm clock that has this feature. The NFC in the Nexus is a little quirky because it’s not obvious where the chip is, so it took a hot minute searching for the sweet spot. However, it did connect to the iBN350, so that’s a plus. The alarm clock also features a USB, in case your smartphone doesn’t have the wireless function and Bluetooth compatible.
iHome Control SmartPlugs/ Smart Monitor – We’ve only begun to scratch the surface of covering smart home products here on the site; so you guys at home should expect to see more, not only from iHome but other companies as well. But staying on topic, the folks at iHome showed off the capabilities of their smartplugs that can be used not just with an app, but also Amazon’s Alexa voice service as well as NEST and Apple Homekit. While we were given just a taste of what the smartplugs can do, which was to turn on and off lights, you can also use them with a wide range of devices. iHome also takes things up a notch with a set that includes a remote in case you don’t want to fumble with an app. They tout the remote as being able to control a million products… and me thinks Alacran would love to get his hands on this one. Finally, there’s the Smart Home Monitor that allows you to control lights as well as temperatures around your home. The Smart Plugs will be available this month (August), and look for the Smart Monitor in and around September.
iHome Weather Tough Bluetooth Speakers – We moved from the indoors to the outdoors, where we were shown a set of speakers, each Bluetooth compatible and tough-tested, meaning they can take a beating (drops, spills, rough weather) and still keep ticking. Most notable is the iBT35, which sports a large build and then there’s the iBT9, which is more portable with a rechargeable battery. And they're also capable of streaming some of your favorite tunes as well as allowing you to receive calls. We’ve tested Altec Lansing’s Life Jacket and iHome’s Bluetooth offerings would make for a fun matchup!
iHome Color Changing – We move things back indoors where we were shown a variety of color changing products; what definitely caught my eye was the iB91 Wireless headphones. The color-changing effect is touted as being capable of changing colors to the beat of the music, as well as change colors through various effects (solid, strobe, etc). It all looks good, but how well do they sound? That’s for the Val-Cave to find out.
iHome Zenergy – If you’re looking for a little peace of mind before bed and during the time when you awake, just as your alarm rattles you up, then the folks at iHome has you covered with Zenergy. The Zenergy iZBT10 takes the idea of a clock radio and bumps things up a notch, using a mixture of soothing lights and sounds that will help you relax as well as drawing you from a deep sleep in a more natural way, rather than doing so abruptly. Waking up in this manner allows you to feel more refreshed and alert rather than slow and groggy. Of course, you can’t take your larger Zenergy with you everywhere, so iHome has produced a smaller version called the iBTZ5, which works much like its bigger brother, minus the clock, but it offers up the same experience in helping you wake up in a more natural state.
Though my time with iHome was brief, it was still worth the NYC journey; I look forward to experiencing all that iHome has to offer in the cave in the near future. And if you’re interested in learning more about iHome and their offerings, simply click that logo to the right and away you go. And stay tuned, we’ll have more from iHome as well as other companies within the pages of TechView.