In the future, we’ll probably be able to control every light switch with our mind. But for the time being, we’re still pretty enamored with the ability to control them from our phone.
The newest tool for doing such electronic bidding is WeMo, Belkin’s just-released and long-awaited system for turning home devices on and off from your iPhone or iPad (sorry, Android users).
The way it works is so simple that we kind of can’t believe it hadn’t been done before. Just plug any electronic device (curling iron, lamp, etc.) into the WeMo unit ($50), which plugs into a regular wall outlet. Then download the free corresponding app and begin controlling your devices remotely.
WeMo relies on your home WiFi network, but the app will work from anywhere you have service: Switch off the basement stereo from your bedroom; pre-air-condition your apartment from across town; turn on your kid’s nightlight from a business meeting in Taiwan.
You can even automate repeating tasks (your morning coffee, say) or add a motion detector that’s triggered when you walk into a predetermined area ($100, including the basic unit).
Doesn’t the Clapper suddenly seem adorably outmoded?