Honeywell Has a Thermostat That Can Compete With Nest

Honeywell introduced the Lyric thermostat ($279) on Tuesday, the first smart thermostat on the market that uses geofencing technology within the device itself. There’s a healthy collection of programmable and smart thermostats already available (and some work with geofencing), but this one can change the temperature based on how close you are to home — from 500 feet to up to 7 miles away.

This means when you’re driving home from work and enter a 7-mile radius from your house, the thermostat will start to cool off or heat up your home based on the weather outside. Unlike Nest and other similar products, it doesn’t rely on predictability — but rather, proximity.

The news comes just one week after Apple announced it is joining the smart home revolution with HomeKit, which will eventually let people use iPhones to control their homes: everything from locks and lights to thermostats and refrigerators. Although Google hasn’t announced plans for a similar network, it recently acquired Nest for $3.2 billion, so home automation is certainly top-of-mind for the big hitters.

Honeywell told Mashable that its Lyric thermostat is just the first product in what will eventually become its own smart home platform.

The accompanying software will work with both iOS and Android devices, so you can use your smartphone or tablet to adjust temperatures remotely, but it’s unclear if Lyric will work on Apple’splatform, too.

The device is elegant and sleek. When a user walks up to it, a built-in proximity sensor signals the display to turn on and show current temperature and status (heating up or cooling down). The edge of the thermostat illuminates when certain temperature adjustments occur — it turns orange when heating, blue when cooling, or green when away/saving energy.

One of the most unique features of the device is that it works with AccuWeather to take the

outside humidity and other weather elements into account;

72 degrees on a humid, rainy day feels a lot different on a sunny one, so the inside adjusts accordingly. The interface also displays the seven-day forecast.

Another nice touch is you can get a text notification when someone in your family hits that threshold or arrives home. It’s also possible turn this off if you don’t want your family’s whereabouts to be tracked, but it could come in handy to know when your kids get home safely from school.

When the device senses the home is empty, it switches it to energy-saving mode, which can also help cut down on costs. Honeywell said it can help save users up to $220 a year, depending on location.

The device is available through the trade channel now (from 90,000 nationwide contractors) and will hit Lowe’s stores in August.


Author: Samantha Murphy Kelly
Source: Mashable