Remember The Clapper? It was once the height of home automation. Clap to turn things on, clap to turn them off. If you don’t believe what a successful yet simple gadget it is, watch some late night TV. The same commercial is still running. It ends with an old lady clapping twice to shut off a tube TV that looks old enough to have been shot by Elvis Presley on a pill bender.
So is it just a modern twist on The Clapper, or are products such as the Belkin WeMo Switch creating an automated home solution for the masses?
The WeMo lets you turn electronic devices on or off from anywhere inside – or outside – your home. The WeMo Switch uses your existing home Wi-Fi network to provide wireless control of TVs, lamps, stereos, and more. Simply download the free WeMo app, plug the switch into an outlet in your home, and plug any device into the switch.
You'll be able to turn that device on or off using your iPhone or iPad. You can even set schedules for your devices and control them remotely using a mobile Internet connection. You can also add additional switches to your home to control more devices.
Brit MoranFor author Brit Moran, the WeMo is a tool for creative living. Her website Brit & Co (http://www.brit.co/) is built around the philosophy that the home is the center of our lives and it can and should be a more creative, functional and beautiful place for us to spend our time.
The WeMo is designed with Moran’s philosophy in mind. If used properly, it can make your home more than automated. It can make it unique.
“Belkin’s new family of products, WeMo, can do all that and more. WeMo lets you control anything you can plug into the wall with a smartphone app. Using your home WiFi, a mobile internet connection, and its ‘switches,’ you can turn any outlet (or all of them) into an automated part of your home,” she said.
Belkin may have paid for that endorsement, but if you tool around her site a bit you’ll quickly see that technology such as the WeMo and a little creativity can quickly turn into an easy home improvement project. Not convinced? Even Al Roker likes this thing, calling it out on the Today Show as a product that turns your home into a “Smart Home.”
The WeMo comes in three varieties and can be found at http://www.belkin.com/us/wemo-switch