Posts tagged " IoT "

Smart Homes – fun ways to techno charge your kitchen

June 13th, 2017 Posted by Overview, Tech Talk, Uncategorized No Comment yet

In our techno-savvy, ultra-connected society, there is always something greater — cooler, better — just around the corner, shouting at you from a screen. Our kitchens can connect, be controlled from a distance and be responsive via the ‘Internet of Things’. There are ovens that can be pre-heated from an app, refrigerator cameras which we can access at the supermarket to see what we’re running low on and many other exciting innovations. A couple of our members of staff are currently involved in home renovations and they’ve rounded up favourite ‘smart kitchen’ gadgets featuring on their technology wish-lists:

iSommelier Smart Decanter


iSommelier promises to soften up the tannins mature wine that normally requires years of cellaring through aerating your wine with highly concentrated purified oxygen. There’s also a smart base with a digital screen that shows you the name of the wine, vintage and aeration progress bar.

There’s an app that connects with the decanter to let you control the device, add aeration programs and gather information about different winemakers.

Portable version available at John Lewis for £349.00

Pantelligent Frying Pan


While visually the Pantelligent will fit right in with the rest of your home cookware, hidden inside it is an impressive set of features that will change the way you cook — in a way your standard frying pan never could.

The base of the pan has heat sensors that can measure the surface temperature of your food, and a Bluetooth setup tucked away in the handle allows the pan to sync up with your phone through an accompanying app. Together, the tech works to make cooking an easier, tastier experience for new chefs looking to improve their skills.

Available at The Fowndry £170


Drop – smart scale


This ‘smart’ weighing scale connects with an app on your iPad/iPhone using Bluetooth (not yet available on Android). It allows you to scale recipes up or down according to your needs. If you want to feed more people, for example, or if you don’t have as much of a key ingredient as you thought you did. There are hundreds of recipes available on the app, each with clear step by step guides, images and tips.

Available at Currys for £41.99




Eating too fast leads to poor digestion and poor weight control. The HAPIfork, powered by Slow Control, is an electronic fork that helps you monitor and track your eating habits. It also alerts you with the help of indicator lights and gentle vibrations when you are eating too fast. Every time you bring food from your plate to your mouth with your fork, this action is called: a “fork serving”. The HAPIfork also measures:

* How long it took to eat your meal.
* The amount of “fork servings” taken per minute.
* Intervals between “fork servings”.

This information is then uploaded via USB or Bluetooth to your Online Dashboard on to track your progress. The HAPIfork also comes with the HAPIfork and apps plus a coaching program to help improve your eating behavior.

Available from, priced $49+$25 international shipping.

The Internet of Things and why it matters to you

November 15th, 2016 Posted by Case Study, Subjects, Tech Talk No Comment yet

The Internet of Things (IoT) is considered to be the next evolution of the Internet. Predictions expect IoT to have five to 10 times the impact on society as the Internet, with over 50 billion devices set to join the IoT landscape by 2020.

What exactly is the IoT? At it’s core is a really simple explanation – it’s about connecting devices over the internet, letting them talk to us, applications, and each other. The most common every-day application in the UK at the moment is within home heating and energy use – think Smart Meters. They have clever functions that let you turn on heating remotely, set it to turn down the temperature if it’s a sunny day, or even turn off when there’s no-one home. Some can tell the latter with motion-sensing cameras, or simply by seeing that your smartphone (and therefore you) has left the premises. If you use a FitBit or similar device you are already interacting with IoT technology.

Here is a great infographic which explains things clearly.

Do you need to think about it for your business?

The short answer is yes. You may not be thinking about smart devices, but you could be thinking about sensors. These tiny devices can monitor areas of your business various ways, think:

Communication – Almost every company has a class of assets it could track. GPS-enabled assets can communicate their current location and movement. Location is important for items that move, such as trucks, but it’s also applicable for locating items and people within an organization. You may have employees that go to meetings, this way you can monitor efficiencies.

Control and Automation – In many cases, a business or consumer will be able to remotely control a device. For example, a business can remotely turn on or shut down a specific piece of equipment or adjust the temperature in a climate-controlled environment. Meanwhile, a consumer can use IoT to unlock their car or start the washing machine. Once a performance baseline has been established, a process can send alerts for anomalies and possibly deliver an automated response. For example, if the brake pads on a truck are about to fail, it can prompt the company to take the vehicle out of service and automatically schedule maintenance.

Cost Savings – many companies will adopt IoT to save money. Measurement provides actual performance data, instead of estimates. Businesses lose money when equipment fails. With new sensor information, IoT can help a company save money by minimizing equipment failure and allowing the business to perform planned maintenance. Sensors can also measure items, such as driving behavior and speed, to reduce fuel expense and wear and tear on consumables.


Are you IoT ready?

Talk to Microcomms about littleBits –  a platform of easy-to-use electronic building blocks that empower you to invent anything, from your own remote controlled car, to a smart home device. The Bits snap together with magnets, no soldering, no wiring, no programming needed. Originally aimed at Schools, the technology is now being adopted by designers, leading institutions and business. Using the simple technology to illustrate concepts and new design ideas. Let us see how it could help you.