Aqara unveils many new features

The future of home automation according to Aqara

In a show worthy of the greats of tech, Aqara unveiled yesterday in Beijing, China, an impressive number of news for the connected home. After stressing the importance of its investor Xiaomi, which has allowed the company to propel itself to the rank of a brand that matters in the universe « smart home », Eugene You unveiled his vision of the future through the prism of the theme "One day in the future". A future that the founder and director ofAqara promises us simpler thanks to a easy home automation perfectly integrated into our daily lives. In addition to new versions of its essential sensors, new switches more intelligent than ever, Aqara also presented its voice assistant named XiaoQiao.

Xiao Qiao: Aqara's voice assistant

It is now around his voice assistant Xiao Qiao that Lumi United Technology, the parent company of Aqara, designs its home automation universe, except that the company does not see theconnected speaker like a front door and that his assistant will be more discreet, at first anyway.

Xiao Qiao is no less a real AI, capable of machine learning as much as deep learning, and equipped with voice print recognition apparently very efficient. Although vocal, the assistant will rely mainly on a graphical user interface both simple and elegant. Aqara has indeed developed an operating system offering a particularly intuitive experience with a lot of visual feedback, very simple but also allowing very advanced controls for the most seasoned users.

Far from the few features offered by our Nest Hub Max or Echo Show 10, Xiao Qiao connected screens will therefore be home automation control panels allowing the management of a multitude of connected objects ranging from lighting systems to connected locks, including CCTV cameras or the multitude of sensors offered by Aqara. Eugene You even mentioned the music streaming and multiroom video capabilities. The Wow effect! was there.

Xiao Qiao's user interface, named Qiao, will be officially unveiled through a series of MagicPad smart screens…

Aqara MagicPad: home automation control panels

THEAqara S1 tactile switch, which we revealed to you a few months ago, is making a strong comeback and in a wider range called Aqara MagicPad.

True home automation systems, these touch control panels will be much more than simple connected switches and will more than ever be able to be qualified as intelligent since they are equipped with touch screens making it possible to control a large number of connected objects. From smart bulbs of course, but also sensors or thermostats.

In addition to adaptive brightness adjustment using induction sensors capable of detecting human presence, the Aqara MagicPad also have gesture control features. In other words, it will be possible to use them with simple gestures, one movement allowing the light to be turned on or off, another to modulate the intensity or even to control the temperature of your room ...

The Aqara MagicPad will be marketed in 3 formats: a square shape of modular design to be placed like a connected switch, but also two large formats that will fulfill the dream of many home automation users who want to have a “dashboard” that is both elegant and easy to use.

New Aqara sensors

Aqara has somewhat revised the design of its opening and motion detection sensors, but above all introduced a millimeter wave sensor inherited from automotive technology. The latter will offer features such as occupancy detection, but will also be able toappreciate the distances and user positioning in space, or the direction of movement.

The demonstration of Aqara was quite impressive, it must be admitted, so much it plunged us into a future which one confined, until recently, to science fiction. But, in China, our future is already somewhat the present ...

Concretely, this new Aqara sensor will be able to know if you are leaving your house or if you are just arriving. Very useful for the prevention of domestic accidents, especially for the elderly, Xiao Qiao will be able to detect possible falls and measure your heart rate, or even to detect if your baby is wet, and much more ... or awesome? We let you judge ...

And much more…

In two hours, Aqara presented a multitude of other connected objects such as a new Aqara G3 smart camera able to analyze gestures thanks to its algorithms or a pet food dispenser calibrating the meals of our four-legged friends according to the previous leftovers.

We were also intrigued by a smart belt from sleep monitoring measuring a whole bunch of parameters. By recording your heart and respiratory rate, but also your body movements, the Aqara sleep belt will be able to determine the quality of your sleep. From these reports, Xiao Qiao will then control other smart devices and automatically create the most suitable scenes or routines ... A clearly futuristic vision which is reminiscent, a little, of the new features. NestHub 2 of Google.

Local home automation control

Finally, Aqara has introduced a technology aimed at overcoming the failures of the home network. We think in particular of network cuts or Wi-Fi. Although the brand relies heavily on the ZigBee protocol, it promises us a new Aqara Ark technology which will allow you to use your connected objects without router or gateway. How does it work? We do not know much more, it is only an announcement for the moment, but Aqara promises us more information in the very near future ...

Last announcement, and not the least, Aqara made by its willingness to open up to other protocols. Fully invested in the new Matter home automation protocol, the Chinese firm intends to support other technologies such as LoRa, NB-IoT, UWB (Ultra Wide Band), RF433MHz, KNX, Modbus, PLC. We note the absence of EnOcean where Eugene You, the CEO of Aqara, however made his debut ...

 

Fascinated by Alexa since the day I received it in beta test, I gradually became passionate about the subject, before deciding to go further by creating a site with Jean-Christophe. An activity that allows me to quench my thirst for new technologies and share my discoveries about the nicest of communities: Les Alexiens.