Oomi smart home system needs no smartphone

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Oomi aims to make it easy to set up and control a smart home, with its Oomi Touch controller

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Let's face it, there's no shortage of smart home systems designed to connect everything in your home and make things easier to control. For example, both the Ninja Sphere and Revolv have recently made waves. With so many launching all the time, it takes a lot to make one stand out, but Oomi has found a way to make everyone stand up and take notice. It's promising to redefine the smart home by taking the smartphone out of the equation, and by making it quick and easy to set up and get going.

The Oomi Cube is the backbone of the system, as it functions as the hub that makes everything work together. However, the Cube itself also features a slew of sensors and functions that actually make it a useful part of the system. There are environmental sensors that include temperature, noise, humidity, vibration, light, glass break, and motion. It also has a regular and IR camera, a 360-degree IR blaster for controlling entertainment systems, and an alert speaker.

Unlike most smart home systems, Oomi doesn't primarily rely on smartphones for controlling it (though there are apps for Android and iOS for times when not near the remote). Instead it features its own remote, the Oomi Touch. This features a seven-inch capacitive touchscreen as well as an array of physical buttons that can control all of Oomi's accessories as well as the user's entertainment system, thanks to the Cube's IR blaster.

Another thing that makes Oomi stand out in the crowded smart home space is how easy it is to add new accessories to the system. Instead of needing to do any kind of coding, users simply tap the new accessory onto the Oomi Touch remote, and after a second or two it's added to the system and ready for use. While some smart home systems are clearly aimed at tinkerers and people with experience, this one seems like it could be used by people with only a minimal amount of technical knowledge.

As for accessories, Oomi is offering a plug, a bulb, a streamer (think of a Chromecast of sorts), an air quality detector, and a multisensor that detects light, motion, temperature, humidity, UV and vibration.

The system runs on Z-Wave technology, and can integrate with other smart home devices a user might already own that also use Z-Wave.

Oomi promises that, like some other smart home options such as Vivint Sky, it will learn from its users and start functioning on its own. The company didn't go into great detail regarding its learning features, but it did say that its system offers more than an "if this then that" logic, and that it will learn how its users live and then make recommendations on what it can manage automatically.

Oomi is seeking funding on Indiegogo to bring its smart home system to market. It flew past its US$50,000 goal in under an hour, and is rapidly approaching 10 times its original plan. There are a number of packages available to backers, with the cheapest going for $279 and offering backers the Oomi Cube, Oomi Touch, and one Oomi accessory of their choosing. From there, the prices go up for additional accessory option packages. The team plans to ship in October, if all goes according to plan.

The pitch video below shows the Oomi system in use and provides more information.

Sources: Oomi, Indiegogo

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