Android App Coming for Home Automation

Blake Krikorian, creator of the Slingbox set-top, at the Sept. 22-26 CEDIA Expo 2010 in Atlanta will bow Google-based Android apps that allow users to control myriad home devices, including Blu-ray Disc players, televisions, media players and DVRs, from a growing array of enabled portable touchscreen devices. Home automation has quietly flourished due to the advent of the Apple iOS operating system that allows iPhone and iPad users to remotely manage a variety of third-party devices, including household lights, security systems, thermostat, oven, microwave, window shades and doorbells. Krikorian, who sold Sling Media to EchoStar in 2008, developed the apps, dubbed “R2,” for the Crestron home control platform. At CEDIA, Krikorian will showcase the apps on Samsung’s new Galaxy Tab, which sports a seven-inch screen, in addition to the five-inch screen Dell Streak. Unique to the Android app, which will be available on Google Marketplace this fall, is that users do not have to switch screens to manage separate devices. For example, if the user is watching a Blu-ray movie, has a home security system with video functionality, and the doorbell rings, a separate screen pops up identifying the visitor. TV volume can be controlled while reading an electronic book, among other functions.

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