Take your pick
Image credit: GE
The “smart home” movement is gaining steam, but currently many of the voice-operated devices require commitments to specific ecosystems, be those Amazon’s Alexa, Google Assistant or Apple’s HomeKit (with Siri).
General Electric, though, is looking to make all of this a little less complicated with its C by GE line. Today, the company announced new Wi-Fi-enabled ceiling lights and wall switches that will work with whichever of the above systems you prefer, reports The Verge.
As a bonus, that means GE’s devices will still work fine even after one of the three clearly emerges as the leader of our voice-controlled future.
You’re even free to switch voice services at any time if you’d like, thanks to a speaker and a microphone that’s built into each device. Unlike many smart devices that need to be tethered to a device such as a Amazon Echo, the GE devices function as their own hubs and can even control other devices.
The ceiling light is meant to be the main illumination source for a room, and you can do anything with it, from changing the brightness or warmth of the lighting to listening to music.
For that matter, you can also listen to music through GE’s light switch, which features all the same functions as the ceiling light but also comes with sensors for motion, humidity and temperature.
Lighting the path
Both products are in development – HomeKit support isn’t fully implemented yet – so it’s likely that we won’t see them on actual shelves for a few months.
On the voice-controlled bright side, though, we’ll get to see the two devices in action at CES 2018 next week.
GE didn’t provide any information on pricing, but it’s likely that will be revealed at the show as well. Judging from the previous C by GE Sol lamp, which retails for $150 (around £110, AU$192), they’re not gonna be cheap.
via Leif Johnson at techradar