7 Tech Must-buys for the Ultimate Smart Home

Posted in Home Tech

Most of us are wired to our phones 24/7 as it is, but rather than using that connectivity for aimless scrolling, a much more productive application is being able to control and influence our home surroundings with just the tap of a button. Who doesn’t want a futuristic smart home setup? From the climate to lighting, music to kitchen appliances, these must-buy gadgets are just the thing to deck out your ultimate smart home.

Sonos Beam

smart home tech - Sonos

If you’re an audio- or cinephile, chances are you dream of the perfect audio setup at home. Build your own 3.1 home theatre system by mixing and matching from Sonos’ suite of smart audio gear. Whether its the all-in-one home entertainment system Sonos Beam or the Sonos One speakers, or the Playbar, adjusted by Oscar-winning audio engineers themselves, the speakers are all equipped with auto-sound tuning system and are also compatible with Google Assistant or Alexa.

More info here.

Samsung Cube Air Purifier

Unveiled recently at CES2020, the Samsung Cube Air Purifier is a stylish, modular-shaped air purifier that blends in with any chic and contemporary surroundings. The three-layer filtration system works to purify and deodorise air. It’s also Wi-Fi enabled, so you can deftly monitor your indoor air pollution levels from everywhere as well as control it from an app.

More info here.

LG Steam Styler

smart home tech - LG steam styler

Save your coins when it comes to dry cleaning and place your clothing in the handy new LG Steam Styler instead. Smart dressers have been setting a new bar for clothing care in the next generation smart home, working to efficiently refresh and revitalise clothes between washes, and remove dust and germs deep within the fabric — especially important for items that can’t be thrown into the washing machine. The gadget stores user data, including your preferences and usage patterns, and you can even download the latest software updates for new garment care cycles.

More info here.

Miele KM7897 FL Induction Hob

smart home tech - Miele

The eternal struggle to multi-task your cooktop will plague you no more when you invest in the ultimate Miele Induction Hob. This new innovative cooktop features a full-surface induction, so you can have maximum flexibility for up to six pots and pans at the same time. Need an extra sear? The Induction Hob also comes with Miele’s exclusive TwinBooster function, so you can combine the power of two cooking zones into one when needed. With the Con@ctivity function, the hob connects automatically to the cooker hood to apply the proper settings.

More info here.

Philips Hue Lighting

A futuristic home just doesn’t seem complete without snazzy high tech mood lighting. Get your hands on a set of Philips Hue Lighting and the Apple Homekit compatible Bridge, and control the lights and colours all from the convenience of your Apple devices. 

More info here.

Nanoleaf Canvas

smart home tech - Nanoleaf

Speaking of swish lighting systems, the Nanoleaf Canvas is made for those who want an ethereal, glowing artwork mounted on their walls. These delightful panels play on our senses of sight, sound and touch for a fun and interactive decoration at home. There’s real-time rhythm technology so it pulsates to your chosen tunes, across a spectrum of 16.4 million colours. 

More info here.

Ambi Climate Control 2 

smart home tech - Ambi Climate

The world’s first smart indoor climate control accessory — designed and headquartered in Hong Kong — can help you regulate the air conditioning in your home to prevent overcooling and overheating, saving up to 30 percent of energy at the same time. Using AI and machine learning, your preferences are taken into account to auto-adjust the temperature and humidity in every room in the house to your desired comfort level.

More info here.

Evelyn Lok
When not trying out the latest beauty and wellness trends, Evelyn is likely enjoying a perfectly balanced negroni or exploring some of Hong Kong's best new places to eat and drink. She covers everything from the biggest events in town to interviews with Hong Kong specialists, with topics spanning art, food and drink, health, tech, and travel.

7 ‘Smart’ Ways to Make Your Home Smell Nice

Posted in Home Tech

Infusing your interiors with a fresh scent used to mean having to plug in or spray a cloying iteration or lighting a candle, which comes with its own set of safety hazards. Happily, home fragrance has come a long way. And thanks to Bluetooth compatibility and app control functions, today’s scenting is systematic — with features like timed spritzes, customisable strengths and aromas to evoke every ambience. Here are seven smart scent systems to spark your senses. 

Moodo

Feeling beachy or craving a citrus spritz? The Moodo aroma diffuser (US$100) lets you customize your fragrance according to your mood. It connects over Wi-Fi and pairs with the Moodo app, which allows you to control the scent schedule remotely (afternoon lemon zest, anyone?) so you don’t waste the fragrance capsules when no one is home. Scent capsules come according to fragrance families (warm, citrus, floral, etc.) in packs of four. You can select from the app’s mixes or create your own signature blend. The device is also compatible with Amazon Alexa, Siri Shortcuts and Google Assistant, so all you have to do is ask it for a specific smell and it will magically waft your way.

Aera

Much like music, scent can set the tone for your home. Vanilla or sandalwood signifies warm and cozy; citrus or lavender brings on the so fresh and so clean vibes. Due to the ease of the Aera Smart Diffuser (US$200) and its accompanying AeraForHome app, filling your space with its own aroma is as easy and safe as the touch of a screen. You can put your spray on a schedule—by time of day or day of the week, control its strength by room and monitor fragrance usage all on the app. Simply plug in your Aera, load a scent capsule and download the app to create an integrated system and a surround-scent experience.

Pura

The Pura (US$59) might look like an ordinary air freshener plug-in at first glance, but this intelligent gadget is equal parts scents and sensibility. It connects to your smart phone over Wi-Fi and gives you complete control of the fragrances it releases through an app. Each fragrance vial lasts 15 days. You can adjust the intensity, create scenting schedules and manage two different scents at the same time and even swap them. The device also doubles as a night light and lets you customize the color and brightness of the illumination.

Aromini Bluetooth

Perk up your pad by diffusing essential oils into the air with the AroMini Bluetooth (US$336). This isn’t your stick-in-oil variety. The high-tech device uses cold-air diffusion to release nanoparticles into the air to keep the scent (and its therapeutic benefits) concentrated, which helps you (and your home) reap the most from the aromas. Connecting it to your smartphone means you can conserve oil and energy by setting specific run times, control the intensity of the fragrance and make sure it’s being distributed evenly around your room. And it covers up to 1,000 square feet, so even if you’re at the opposite end of the room, you’ll still get the full effect.

CINQ

If standard scents aren’t your thing, the CINQ smart fragrance diffuser (US$120) lets you be a master mixologist by giving you the tools to create 8,000 different varieties of unique fragrances. The connected device pairs with your smartphone and Alexa. By exploring the CINQ Studio App and providing feedback on 24 specific smells, the company will send you capsules on a monthly basis. The device fits five capsules at a time and you can adjust the strength of each one to create a scent that’s uniquely you, so there’s no chance of smell fatigue.

Scentee Machina

While it looks like an elegant set of oils on a tray, Scentee Machina (price TBC) is an AI-driven device that takes home fragrancing into the future. There are 14 different scents to choose from and they aren’t your basic sniffs. Think: chocolate, red wine, buttered toast. The diffuser holds four cartridges at a time, and you’ll get a new one every month. The controls are operated by your smartphone — you can turn them on and off, set timers and manipulate intensities all remotely. Not to mention, AI intelligence analyzes your favorite fragrances from your usage history and recommends custom scents.

Pium

If you need a morning lift or help de-stressing at night, the Pium smart diffuser (US$190) emits a scent to suit your mood based on the time of day. Morning is a dose of citrus and flowers; afternoon releases an aromatic and herbal blend; and nighttime offers an herbal and floral mix. The system can handle all three capsules simultaneously and allows you to manage the strength, schedule and power of the scents through the accompanying app. It’ll also tell you when your capsules are running on empty and lets you buy more through the app. Oh, and it pairs with Alexa and Google Assistant, so all you have to do is ask it to deploy a specific blend and you shall receive one — without even having to pick up your phone.

Staff Writer