Trending February 2024 # Review: Elgato Eve Motion Is A Standalone Homekit Motion Sensor For Triggering Automations # Suggested March 2024 # Top 6 Popular

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Elgato Eve Motion is a standalone motion detection sensor that’s compatible with Apple’s HomeKit feature. Eve Motion can be used as a sensor in iOS 10’s Home app to trigger scenes and control accessories.

When added to Apple’s Home app, Eve Motion ($49) appears just like other HomeKit motion sensors. You can see when sensors are armed and ready, when sensors are activated by motion, and check values like battery level and charging status.

You can optionally enable notifications for motion sensors including Eve Motion so the Home app sends you an alert each time motion is detected, but for me the value is mainly in using Eve Motion as a trigger for automation. For example, you can use Eve Motion to automatically turn on a HomeKit lamp when motion is detected after sunset with a few steps.

From the Automation tab of the Home app, select Create New Automation then tap A Sensor Detects Something. From here you can select Eve Motion as the automation sensor, then select which scene or device you want to react when motion is detected. After you make your selection, you can toggle on the option to trigger the automation only after sunset and set the state of what you want controlled (like lamp on at 100% brightness) then tap Done to save the automation.

Eve Motion works reliably as a motion sensor, but you may want to increase the sensitivity. In testing, I found that I could enter my office in the dark for several seconds without triggering Eve Motion (Elgato promises 2 second response time) and automatically turning on the desk lamp when using the default sensitivity level. After some poking around in Eve’s companion app, I turned up the sensitivity level from low to high (and there’s a medium level too) which noticeably helped.

Eve Motion relies on Bluetooth Low Energy for connectivity and runs on two AA batteries so increasing the motion sensitivity likely negatively impacts battery life.

The biggest issue for me with motion sensors and automation in Apple’s Home app is what appears to be a missing feature in my experience. It’s easy to turn a light on when motion is detected, but Apple’s Home app doesn’t appear to support automatically turning a light off when motion is no longer detected. (If this is supported in Apple’s Home app, I’m not aware of it and haven’t discovered it.)

Ideally, I’d like to be able to turn off the desk lamp if no motion has been detected for, say, 30 minutes. This may be possible when configuring automation through Eve’s companion app, but my interest is primarily in configuring Apple’s Home app and not managing a folder of accessory apps.

Physically, Eve Motion is the same size as other Elgato smart sensors (80 x 80 x 32 mm) like Room and Weather, but larger than Ecobee’s remote sensors with motion detection and HomeKit support. Eve Motion can be placed on a flat surface and stand on its own without using a stand, or Eve Motion can be mounted on a wall.

Elgato promises a 120º field of view and 9 meters or 30 feet range when mounted 2 meters or 6.5 feet above floor level.

In practice, Eve Motion works on par with Ecobee’s remote sensors which were recently updated to support HomeKit as motion (and temperature) sensors. The main difference is that you need an Ecobee 3 thermostat ($249)to use Ecobee remote sensors (2 for $79).

I haven’t tested Eve Motion for long enough to gauge battery life, but my other Elgato sensors powered by AA batteries generally last 2 to 3 months before needing new batteries so that’s something to consider as well. [Update: Elgato actually documents battery life by product here; Eve Motion is rated for over 1 year whereas Room is rated for the 3 months that I’ve observed. Updating batteries annually is reasonable and good to learn.]

At this point, Eve Motion and motion sensors in general are more experimental than essential in my HomeKit setup. Lights, locks, and a thermostat are key accessories, but Apple’s Home app needs to learn a few more tricks before motion sensors are as useful as they could be for me personally.

Still, if you’re interested in HomeKit and want to see what motion sensors can do for your setup, Elgato Eve Motion ($49) is the standalone motion sensor to purchase.

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Elgato Eve Motion Review: A Smart Sensor To Automate Apple Households

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This wireless motion sensor is part of Elgato’s lineup of HomeKit-compatible accessories and can be used to trigger “scenes” and rules based on your movement (or the lack thereof) around your house.

Testing

Like most HomeKit accessories, the Eve Motion is a snap to set up. It runs on two batteries and uses Bluetooth low energy (BLE) to communicate with your other iOS devices and Apple TV. No hubs or Wi-Fi setup required.

While you can use Apple’s Home app to configure the Motion, it makes more sense to download the dedicated Elgato Eve one, which gives you more options. After inserting the two included AA batteries into the sensor and launching the Eve app, you choose to add a new device and the Eve Motion should pop up immediately. After that, it’s simply a matter of scanning the unique HomeKit code on the sensor with your iPhone or iPad, selecting the room where you’ll be using it, and then updating the sensor’s firmware. All told, the process takes about six minutes.

You can also tweak the motion sensitivity and duration values during this initial app setup. The latter is used to determine how quickly the motion sensor will re-detect motion after it’s been triggered.

As with Apple’s Home app, you can use the Eve app to create “scenes” that execute multiple actions simultaneously with a single command (An “I’m Home” scene could trigger all the HomeKit-enabled lights in your home to turn on when the Eve sensor detects motion, for instance). You can also create timers and rules to set scenes automatically at specific times or with specific motion triggers.

To test the Eve Motion, we used it in various parts of our home—including the living room, basement, bedroom, and office—creating location-specific scenes, timers, and rules based on our movements.

Each sensor is battery-powered so it can be placed anywhere. Elgato

Observations

The design is typical of Elgato’s other HomeKit-enabled Eve devices. It’s 3 x 3 x 1.25 inches, white, and completely unassuming. That’s fine, even preferable, given that motion sensors generally aren’t supposed to draw attention to themselves.

Of course, the Eve Motion is much more than a simple motion detector. It can notify you when it senses movement as you’d expect, but it can also automate groups of actions when it detects specific motion. With the help of an Eve Weather sensor and an energy switch, we used our Motion review unit to help turn on the fan in the living room window when it noticed motion and the outside temperature was 72 degrees or less.

The Eve Motion can use your lack of motion to trigger home automations, too. For instance, we created a rule that turned off the lights in the basement if the sensor didn’t register any motion in for an hour.

Throughout the testing process, the Eve Motion performed consistently well. It has a 30-foot motion detection range, a 120-degree field of view, and thanks to its IPX3 weatherproof certification, can be used indoors and out.

The weatherproof sensors can be installed outside to perform tasks when you come home or if it sees unexpected guests. Elgato

We did have some initial trouble setting up the Eve with its companion app. Something apparently went wrong during the firmware update and the app got hung up and subsequently wouldn’t recognize the sensor. When deleting and reinstalling the app didn’t fix the problem, we finally reset the motion sensor and reinserted the batteries, which did the trick.

Conclusion

If you live in a predominately Apple household and are fairly committed to the HomeKit smart home platform, the Eve Motion is an undeniably useful addition. It’s a little pricey, but it opens up a world of new home automations for Apple users willing to part with

Details

Price: $50

Dimensions: 80 x 80 x 32 mm

Field of view: 120°

Range: 30 ft. max at 6.5 ft. mounting height

Operating temperature: 0°F – 130°F

Reaction time: 2 seconds

Power: 2 AA replaceable batteries

Grade: 4/5

Nanoleaf Unveils Homekit Lighting System That Learns Over Time With Motion, Brightness Sensing

Just ahead of showing off its latest smart lighting system at CES next week, Nanoleaf has unveiled the modular, intelligent, and interactive HomeKit lighting system that is part of its new Learning Series to offer a more seamless smart home experience.

Nanoleaf shared the news in a press release today:

Smart lighting pioneer Nanoleaf unveils the Nanoleaf Learning Series, an all-in-one, interactive, intelligent lighting system for your home, at CES. The latest innovation from the world’s leading smart home decor company creates a fully integrated lighting system for the user right from the comfort of their home. The new offering intuitively learns, senses, and reacts to users needs in a way that eliminates the often complicated and counterintuitive requirements of today’s smart home.

We’ve previously reviewed both the Nanoleaf Light Panels and Nanoleaf canvas, the latter of which can be used as touch-sensitive HomeKit buttons. But the new Learning Series takes things even further with “intelligent learning, motion sensing, and brightness sensing technology with scheduling” to let users enjoy their smart lighting more and think about controlling it less.

While we’ve seen triangular and square modular designs from Nanoleaf before, the Learning Series will debut with a hexagonal design.

the first ever modular smart lights with shape interconnectivity. The first of this line will feature touch-reactive Unified Hexagons with interconnectivity capabilities that enable users the freedom to create all new configurations…

A pre-order signup list for the Nanoleaf Learning Series Hexagons is now live on Nanoleaf’s website with shipping beginning this spring.

Nanoleaf also teased some potential upcoming products that could be a part of the Learning Series such as light bulbs, dimmers, remotes, and more.

Check out the full press release below:

TORONTO — Smart lighting pioneer Nanoleaf unveils the Nanoleaf Learning Series, an all-in-one, interactive, intelligent lighting system for your home, at CES. The latest innovation from the world’s leading smart home decor company creates a fully integrated lighting system for the user right from the comfort of their home. The new offering intuitively learns, senses, and reacts to users needs in a way that eliminates the often complicated and counterintuitive requirements of today’s smart home.

Building off the success of Nanoleaf’s best selling interactive modular light panels, the Learning Series includes a system of products that complement and work in harmony with one another to make home lighting smarter every day. Through an intuitive blend of intelligent learning, motion sensing, and brightness sensing technology with scheduling, Nanoleaf lighting becomes more intelligent as the system learns and grows throughout the home.

Nanoleaf helps simplify smart home technology by elevating the interactive experience with easy-to-use installation and the flexibility to create custom designs unique to the individual user. In fact, the system is so intelligent, it knows when and where you need light, exactly how you need it, with minimal manual controls necessary.

“We know how busy life can get. But despite the rise of smart home technology intended to simplify your life, many of these products are often counter-intuitive and complicated to use,” said Gimmy Chu, CEO and co-founder of Nanoleaf. “With the Learning Series, we’re helping to simplify the smart home with technology that optimizes lighting automation to fit your life, so users can spend more time enjoying the experience.”

As part of Nanoleaf’s continued efforts to bring smart homes into the future, the company will soon introduce a line of interoperable Unified Light Panels, the first ever modular smart lights with shape interconnectivity. The first of this line will feature touch-reactive Unified Hexagons with interconnectivity capabilities that enable users the freedom to create all new configurations, from abstract geometric layouts to perfect replicas of their favorite characters and shapes. With six sides for connectivity, the Unified Hexagons invite users to truly tap into their imagination and personalize their lighting designs. After much anticipation from its reveal at last year’s CES, Hexagons will be featured at the Nanoleaf booth and be available for pre-order ahead of launch in Spring 2023.

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Homekit Weekly: Eve Energy With Thread Support Is My Go

Smart outlets are one of the simplest ways to start your smart home journey, and I’ve tried almost all of the ones that support HomeKit. With its new Thread support, the Eve Energy will become my go-to recommendation until other products add Thread supports.

HomeKit Weekly is a series focused on smart home accessories, automation tips and tricks, and everything to do with Apple’s smart home framework.

Regardless if you’re new to HomeKit or a seasoned user, you might not be familiar with the Thread protocol, so let’s catch up, so we’re all on the same page.

At a 40,000-foot view, Thread networking is a mesh networking protocol for HomeKit and other smart home devices with direct peer-to-peer communication and is self-maintaining and self-healing. Even if a smart home device goes off, other devices will still be kept alive, and the network will automatically reconfigure itself as needed.

Many of the technical aspects of smart home devices weren’t necessarily designed originally to be extremely responsive and operated in a crowded environment. With Thread, everything is designed from the ground up with the smart home in mind, which means a special focus is made for low power usage –especially for battery-powered devices.

A Thread network consists of two types of roles: routers and endpoints. And this role is not permanent – if a device is capable of routing, it can be either, depending on the current network situation and use case. Each device on a Thread network is called a node. Eve has a very in-depth article on all the technical details of Thread, but TL;DR, it’s going to be a great technology for HomeKit as more devices support it.

Eve Energy

I’ve long had an appreciation for Eve’s product lineup. Are they always the lowest cost? No, but they are among the most reliable and have a great build quality. The Eve iPhone app might rival Apple’s own Home app as the best way to interact with HomeKit as well.

The new Eve energy doesn’t look a lot different than the old one, but, of course, the secret is in what you can’t see. Smart outlets are useful for turning “dumb” devices into smart ones. You could use them to trigger lamps, turn off your washing machine when water is detected (paired with a floor sensor), turn on white noise machines at night, or really anything that has a hardware off and on switch (oil heater, etc). They’re easy to install and easy to relocate in the future. One of the most common use cases is turning Christmas tree lights on and off during the Christmas season. Using HomeKit, you could turn lights on at a certain time, using Siri on a HomePod mini, or use the Home app to manually turn them on and off. If you don’t own a single smart home product today, smart outlets are the place to start.

What difference does Thread make today?

Eve Energy can act as a Thread router, and so can the HomePod Mini and Apple TV 4k.

Eve devices that support Thread

The Eve Door and Window, Eve Weather, and Eve Aqua join Eve Energy as Thread enabled supported devices.

Installing Eve Energy

Installing Eve Energy with Thread is so trivial that a child can probably do it. Unbox, plug it into the wall and scan the QR code on the side of the unit with the Home app. One minor detail I appreciate about this product is how the QR code is on the side of the outlet. I’ve used some products in the past that are on the back, so it’s tricky scanning it while it’s plugged in.

Use the Home app with Eve Energy

Once the device shows up in the Home app, you’ll have full access to turn it on and off via Siri and using the Home app. One detail Apple supports for smart outlets is setting them to appear as a light, outlet, or fan.

With something like a switched outlet connects to a lamp, a simple automation is to have it turn on at sunset and turn back off at sunrise. If you have a HomeKit enabled motion sensor, you could create an automation where when the motion detector detects motion, it turns the light on but turns off after a few hours. I personally use a motion sensor at the top of our steps to turn on a lamp when motion is detected from 11:00 PM to 6:00 AM, as that means our kids are coming down the stairs.

Wrap up

I am beyond excited to see Thread-enabled devices coming to the market. Eve is getting out ahead of other manufacturers, and I’ll be choosing Thread-enabled devices when I have the option in the future. If you’re looking to start building out Thread support in your home, check out Eve Energy.

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Review: Amara Is A Web

Producing video subtitles is a laborious process. First you must transcribe the original video, writing down everything that’s said, proofread and correct then, synchronize the subtitles with the audio so they appear on-screen right when the lines are being delivered. Finally, you translate the text into other languages. Amara is a platform that tries to crowd-source all of this work, making it possible for you to set up a system where droves of volunteers help you produce video subtitles for free, without having to download or install anything. It’s not entirely successful, but it’s an interesting first step in the right direction.

Before you can translate a video, you must first transcribe it. You can select any video for transcription – you don’t have to own the content: it just has to be available online. Simply provide Amara with a video’s URL on YouTube, Vimeo, or another online video service, and it launches into the transcription interface. You don’t have to open an account before you begin–you can just start working.

The first step in the transcription process is just writing down what the people in the video say without worrying too much about typos and capitalization. Amara’s transcription interface is simple and intuitive. By default, it plays four seconds of video, then automatically pauses. You then type what you’ve just heard, and hit Tab to play four more seconds. If you miss anything, you can hit Shift-Tab to rewind four seconds and listen again. If you don’t like to constantly hit Tab and Shift-Tab, Amara can also auto-pause the video for you. In this mode, you simply listen to the video and type as you listen, with Amara pausing it automatically to let you catch up. The way this works isn’t clearly explained (Amara calls it “magical”), but it works remarkably well: The video paused and played right when I needed it to, and I had to hit Shift-Tab to rewind only rarely. Even with the excellent auto-pausing engine, transcription is still a laborious process, though. I touch-type quickly, but transcribing a four-minute video took me about twenty minutes of intense concentration.

The “magical autopause” mode pauses the video cleverly to let you catch up on your typing, and works very well for touch-typists.

The directions also say you don’t have to worry if you get the timing slightly wrong, as you’ll be able to correct it later. Accordingly, I didn’t worry much – but when I got to the final step, reviewing and correcting the subtitles, I discovered things aren’t so simple to correct. I wasn’t always able to extend or contract the subtitles along the timelines so they synced correctly, and the whole process quickly got out of hand. The end result I got reflects Amara’s strengths and weaknesses: The video was fully transcribed, but the synchronization was only so-so. Another issue was that some of the subtitles were too long: Amara doesn’t offer an easy way to shift text from the end of one subtitle to the beginning of the next (except for manually copy-pasting), so if you happen to break things down into too large chunks when transcribing, you’ll have a problem later on.

Once a source-language transcription is ready, Amara lets you (or others) translate it into your language of choice while watching the video for reference.

Once you’ve got a timed transcription of a video, you can now translate it into different languages. Translation is simpler than transcription: Just type the translated text under each subtitle. Of course, how good the end product is depends both on the transcription’s quality and on the translator, but the interface itself is easy to use. Also, to enjoy the subtitles, viewers would usually have to use Amara’s player.

Amara is an interesting product, but after using it, I remain unconvinced that video subtitles can truly be crowd-sourced, if “crowd-sourcing” implies casual, untrained work. Producing a high-quality subtitled translation is a complex process, with each step requiring its own expertise. Still, if you want to dabble with subtitling or translation, or if you have a video and volunteer or professional translators dedicated to putting out a professional-quality result, Amara is a powerful platform worth experimenting with.

Note: The Download button on the Product Information page takes you to the vendor’s site, where you can use the latest version of this Web-based software.

Review: 4Snaps Is A Fun New Word Game For Ios

Product: Today we’re taking a look at a brand-new word game for iOS called 4Snaps. The premise of the game is like a cross between charades and Draw Something. You’re given a choice of three words. You have to pick one of these and then take four photos (“snaps”) to help the other player guess the word. The object is to see how many turns you can take in a row before someone misses the word.

Gameplay: The gameplay sounds easy enough, but once you start playing you’ll quickly realize that it’s far more challenging than it sounds. The early version that the we tested only contained thirteen of the over 2,100 words in the app’s dictionary, but I still had a hard time finding a way to demonstrate some of the terms I was given to choose from. Despite the fact that I frequently saw duplicate words in my selection, I never took the same photo twice.

Completing a round earns in-game coins for both players. When picking the word you want to try to photograph, you can cash in 150 of these coins for a different set of words to pick from. If you’re low on coins but really want some different words, you can buy more as an in-app purchase.

When I played my first few rounds of 4Snaps, I happened to be in a mostly-empty coffee shop with my siblings. As it turns out, the game is actually even more fun when you’ve got several people playing as a team. We sat around coming up with ideas, then taking turns posing for photos. A little later, my sister was leaving my apartment to meet some friends, but stopped dead in her tracks and came back inside to finish one more round when I told her the word was “planking.”

Issues: I did have two very small issues with the game. The first was something I overlooked for a while, and I suspect many people will not even notice: while you can search for a player by their username, or an email address from your contacts, you can’t pick a Game Center friend to play against. It’s not a huge oversight, and as I said, I don’t think most people will be put off too much by that.

The other issue I had was a bit less subtle. When I got my first notification from the app, I immediately dove into the Settings app to disable sound notifications. I was caught so off-guard by the two-second squeaking sound that I also nearly smacked smacked my phone off of the table. The sound is definitely unique, but some users (like myself) may find it a bit annoying, especially if they’re receiving a new notification every few minutes.

Despite these minor issues, the game is a lot of fun. Both can be easily remedied on the user’s end by turning off sound notifications and asking your Game Center friends for their in-app usernames.

Bottom Line: Even with the limited number of words in the pre-release dictionary, I found 4Snaps both fun and challenging. The game plays well as a one-on-one match or with a group of friends backing you up.

If you like word games, I highly recommend giving 4Snaps a look. It’s available right now on the App Store for free.

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