Shiny gadget of the month: Dot: The Physical Push Notification

By January 23, 2017 Article

It is now 2017 and smart devices and technology just keep coming out, each more exciting than the last. It seems like there is always a new device coming out to help us make our dumb homes, smart. I personally think it is exciting and have been slowly accumulating smart home devices over the past year, some of which have been written about in our newsletter (WeMo switch, Amazon Echo, etc). The Dot is yet another extension for home and workplace automation. It can make excellent use of smart devices you already have, or can be functional all on its own.

They call it Dot: The Physical Push Notification, but it can be so much more than that. The way that it works is by working with your phone and Bluetooth technology to communicate and give instructions based on parameters you set. So you can use the dot to send you notifications relevant to your surroundings, or command your smart home based on your location. For example you can use it as a digital post-it note (and if you are like me this would be awesome), so if you are out in the middle of something and have a thought like when I get home I need to remember to do ____. You can send a note so then when you walk in your door your phone notifies you of that reminder. How cool would that be! Same could be used in reverse to make sure you bring a certain something with you when you are heading out the door (how many times have you run out the house and forgot something you needed).

It can be used for more than just notifications too. As I mentioned before if you have smart home devices you can use the dot to control them as well. So if you have smart lights you can have the dot turn them on and off as you move throughout your house. The same concept can be used with smart plugs or even Spotify music to move throughout the house with you. Some other examples given was to arm your security system when you go to bed or leave the house, even adjust the temperature using a smart thermostat.

This is not just a gadget for your home either. You could use it for work too. Have the dot set to notify you if your boss emails you with a colored light indicator or have notes pop up when you sit down at your desk.

The dot is a fascinating concept that could have so many different uses. They are aiming for a March launch and currently have pre-orders on their kickstarter page of $20 for a single dot, $55 for three, or $85 for five. They have raised over $115,000 which far surpasses their $20,000 goal. I look forward to seeing how these are adopted in the market and what uses people find for them.

Take a look for yourself here.