MicroBots: New life for your old stuffFebruary 16, 2016
OK, so we’ve all heard about “smart devices”, right? Of course. Every real estate tech website known to man has been discussing them extensively for the last few years. Devices like the Phillips Hue, the August Smart Lock, and of course the sexy NEST thermostat, have steadily been replacing their tired and ugly counterpart devices for several years now.
These smart devices and related gadgets were easily the largest draw at last month’s Consumer Electronics Show with several hundred manufacturers in nearly 60,000 square feet of show space.
But, what about all our old appliances and gadgets that we may not be ready to get rid of just yet? You know, that coffee pot you’ve been using for the last 15 years that makes ridiculously delicious coffee… or the old Pioneer stereo receiver that still cranks out the tunes just like it did on day one? If you’re like me, you’re probably not ready to toss those out just yet.
Enter Prota MicroBots
MicroBots physically attach to your existing devices, so you can operate their functions remotely. Currently slated to hit the market in April, there are 3 variations to choose from; Push, Twist and Bridge along with the Proto Box (automation hub). I’ll explain each below.
MicroBot Push: Basically a wireless robotic finger that can push most any button or switch via an app on your phone, or via IFTT style recipes created with the companion hub. These little guys can be used in tandem to provide basic on-off functionality.
MicroBot Twist: Attaches on a tangent to a knob and turns in any direction. The extra knob cover comes in handy when the surface of the knob is not wide for enough friction. Thanks to MicroBot Twist you can remotely control deadbolt door locks, amplifier volume, HVAC equipment and any appliance with twist style knobs.
MicroBot Bridge: Works as a universal remote control for all your compatible appliances, except that you never have to press it! Prota Box and MicroBot Bridge will take full control and will intelligently automate your air conditioner, TV, Hi-FI equipment, etc. so you can potentially save on your energy bills and enjoy a more automated lifestyle.
Prota Box: Prota Box helps you to create, manage and maximize the utility of your smart home experience. The smart hub enables you to control MicroBots and other smart devices paired with Prota, no matter where you are. Better yet, Prota Box lets you automate all connected devices as you need. Setting up an automation rule is as easy as writing a note to yourself.
As you can probably start to imagine the possibilities with these little guys, know that there will also be other MicroBots introduced as the year goes on including the MicroBot Sense multi-sensor station, the MicroBot View wireless camera, and the MicroBot Scan wireless fingerprint reader, each with a similar price-point as current models (starting at $49) and each taking this “smart home” craze to a new level of awesome without having to ditch your trusty old devices and appliances!