Posts Tagged ‘Rogers smart home monitoring’
Do singles have different smartphone habits than those of us who are coupled up? What does your dog do when you’re not at home? And what’s all this buzz about the new Apple operating system? Read all about it in this week’s edition of the weekend reading.
Apple owners started upgrading to iOS 7 this week, getting their first chance to swipe through the brighter screens and spy some major changes. MobileSyrup reports that “the biggest improvements to the experience are in the subtle, mundane maneuvers people repeat hundreds of times per day.” Upgrades include an expanded notification bar, background updates and a Control Centre where users can turn on WiFi settings and open the camera. The Guardian, meanwhile, walks us through some of the big questions – like what happened to Spotlight and how you search in Safari. Of course, not everyone loves the changes – check out this child’s reaction on the Huffington Post.
What are your thoughts on the new iOS?
Protect your pooch
Three quarters of pet owners want updates on their furry friends when they’re away from home, according to Rogers research. Stacey O’Handley’s family uses their Rogers Smart Home Monitoring system to help keep an eye on their dogs and cat – and thanks to the system, her husband was able to spot their five-year-old lab Oscar with a steak knife and rush home to keep their beloved pet safe. Read more about their story here. This fall, Rogers Smart Home Monitoring is expanding to 28 additional cities and towns in New Brunswick and Newfoundland.
Would you like to receive updates on your pets when you’re away?
Smartphones and the single gal (or guy)
More than half of single smartphone users between 21 and 42 would call themselves practically “addicted” to their device, according to new research from eMarketer. The survey from online dating websites found that the single gal is slightly more connected: 48 per cent checked their mobile device first thing in the morning, compared to two out of five men. Singles also send text messages daily, with 47 per cent calling it a constant activity. Plus, three quarters surf the web on mobile throughout the day, and roughly the same percentage check social sites a few times daily.
I may not be single – but I definitely fall within the same uber connected category as those surveyed. Do you think singles are more attached to their phones than those who are coupled up?
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How much time do you spend on your smartphone daily? What are your favourite types of apps to use? And if you live in Quebec or Ottawa, we’ve got great news for you! All that and more in this week’s Weekend Reading!
Android vs. iPhone: Which users spend the most time on their devices?
According to a new study from CNET this week, iPhone users are logging the most minutes on their handsets.
iPhone users spend an average of 75 minutes a day on their devices, with 22 per cent of that time spent talking. Android users, however, only spend 49 minutes on their devices, with nearly a third of that time (28 per cent) spent talking.
What surprised me most in this article though were the two least-used features – GPS and device cameras. Having zero sense of direction, I can’t tell you how many times I’ve pulled out my smartphone to get me on track! And I find having a camera on your device makes it so much easier to capture moments, because we tend to always have our smartphones on us. It sounds like I’m not in the majority though – does the same hold true for you? Do you rarely use your GPS or smartphone camera?
Lifestyle apps becoming more popular
Did you know it’s already possible to control your washing machines, refrigerators or lights right from an app on your smartphone?
Lifestyle apps go beyond household electronics though. Take for instance Rogers Smart Home Monitoring service and app, which allow you to monitor, protect and control various parts of your home, including adjusting your thermostat on the go. There are also numerous car apps that can now lock and unlock doors, start your engine remotely and even gauge your battery life.
The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) predicts these kinds of apps will be in most households by 2022.
So what’s next for these apps? Making them business friendly. Midsize Insider recently looked at how businesses can use these apps to streamline their business by using them for conference calls and collaboration between employees, customers and partners. This article has some great tips and food for thought if you’re looking to improve your own business processes.
Rogers and Videotron build-out expanded LTE network
This week Rogers was happy to announce an agreement with Videotron to bring LTE to even more residents in Quebec and Ottawa.
The network and spectrum sharing agreement will help bring the blazing fast speeds of the LTE network to both businesses and consumers, and provide better mobile coverage in rural Quebec.
We also continue to roll out our LTE network to even more areas as part of our commitment to expand in 44 new markets this spring, so stay tuned.
Kelly is a regular RedBoard contributor.
Are you going away this spring? Lucky you!
What about your home?
When planning a vacation, we often take the time to protect ourselves by getting insurance, learning about our destination, and reading about helpful tips for staying safe. But how about the things we leave behind? York Regional Police has put together a great list of home safety tips for you and your family.
We also spent some time with @BitofMomsense (aka Rebecca Stanisic) who is trialing Rogers Smart Home Monitoring for a year, to ask her how the service helps her when she’s away from home:
What insider tips would you like to share with families who are going away this spring?
Take the usual precautions when going away:
- Tell a neighbour or someone that you trust that you won’t be around and have them drive by or keep an eye on the house.
- Be sure to notify anyone on your monitoring system contact list too!
- Ask someone to pick up mail or newspapers.
- One of the things we do before we go is unplug all unnecessary items like coffee makers or toasters.
- Before leaving, do a walk around the house to ensure that things are in order!
How did having Smart Home Monitoring help you feel safer when you were travelling?
Being able to connect with our home monitoring system via an app on our mobile is like having our security, and peace of mind, in our pockets. I can check the system to see if anything has been triggered, check the camera and know that I will get a text should the alarm go off.
When we travel, it’s nice to know that if there is a problem we will be notified immediately, via email and text (and then phone). It’s not just if the house gets broken into, or if the glass breaks. Fire, gas and water leakage alarms are also set up which definitely is an added comfort. The house is well taken care of when we are away!
Did you have an alarm system in the past?
We did have a system beforehand that included monitoring and motion sensors. We had it installed when we first built the house 9 years ago.
Rogers Smart Home Monitoring offers much more than our old system did. Not only do we still have the motion sensors and monitoring, but we have the front door camera (my favourite feature), the touchpad, the App, the texts and emails. I feel like the communication is better and the service is better.
What are your favorite features of Rogers Smart Home Monitoring?
I truly am most impressed with the camera. Being able to quickly look to see who is at the front door when the doorbell rings just adds extra peace of mind to me, plus the kids enjoy seeing who is there!
We also have the ability to control appliances and lamps remotely, so we can have a light go on and off while we are away. We haven’t set one up yet but we are looking forward to using that option.
One of the most stressful things for me used to be setting our house alarm as we left for trips. Often I was doing this by myself on my way to pick up my husband at work before we left. It meant I would arm it, run out the door, get in the car and wait to make sure it set properly. Now, I am able to set it anywhere and anytime I want. If I forget, I can do it from a parking lot!
I remember reading on Twitter that you adjusted the thermostat from your car on your way back home – that must have been handy, tell us more about it!
Yes! Being able to adjust the thermostat from anywhere (including my bed!) is a pretty neat feature. We have to remember to take it off the programming before we travel to be able to control it (the program tries to override us sometimes) but it’s excellent. Before we had Rogers Smart Home, we would turn down the air conditioning or the heat while we were away and return home to an extremely hot or cold house. Now, the house is at a perfect temperature when we arrive home, and it’s as though we had never left.
Are you going away soon? Share your tips on keeping your home safe in the comments below.
Elise is a regular RedBoard contributor.
Do you live in Hamilton, Oakville, Burlington, Niagara Falls, St. Catharines and other Golden Horseshoe areas? As of today, we’re happy to announce that you can now sign up for Smart Home Monitoring by visiting this link.
Mara Shapiro has three kids and two dogs, works in social media, spends a lot of time on Twitter and writes about parenting teens and life in general all over the Internet. Parenting is her way of life and she’s always happy when she finds new solutions to make her life and parenting easier.
So when we invited Mara to try out Rogers Smart Home Monitoring for a year, she jumped at the opportunity. She thought it would help her manage her home better, little did she know it would become another tool in her parenting kit. See how by reading about Mara’s experience:
How is this system different from your previous old-fashioned alarm system?
Rogers Smart Home Monitoring is completely different than what we had before, which was a simple alarm system. The equipment has been completely updated. Before, we had old keypads, door contacts and motion sensors. Now, we can manage our system from our smartphones, the tablet Touchpad, our computer and still use the old keypad. Our old system didn’t integrate our thermostat. It’s so much easier to manage the temperatures in the house now. We didn’t have the cameras either, and those are a fantastic way to see what’s happening at the house. I could go on, from the rules that are so easy to set up using the web portal, to our ability to see when doors were opened. As I said, everything is different, updated, and as state-of-the art as it gets.
What is your favorite feature?
That’s really hard to say. I absolutely love being able to manage my home from my smartphone, see what’s on the cameras, and even control the lamp in my living room. It’s sort of fun to turn the light on and off remotely, and hopefully freak everyone at home out. So, I guess the flexibility of using Smart Home Monitoring from wherever we are is my favorite feature. However, the cameras are pretty cool too. And, setting the thermostat rules from my smartphone instead of fooling around with the buttons and arrows? Oh, who am I kidding? I love everything!
Did anything surprise you about the system?
How easy it is to use surprised me most. In the past, I was not a fan of alarm systems. I was always afraid I would set it off, or put in the wrong code or something. Rogers Smart Home Monitoring is so easy to use and with the Touchpad and smartphone app, so easy to turn on. Setting the rules with the web portal is really simple as well. Overall, anyone with a bit of tech knowledge or training would really be able to enjoy and manage what would normally be a complicated system.
Do you feel that Smart Home Monitoring simplifies your daily life?
Smart Home Monitoring definitely simplifies my daily life. Using the web portal, I can set up everything, from my thermostat to my lamp, to how often the cameras take pictures. I can see when the kids get home from school and what the dogs are doing downstairs. I like feeling secure, knowing that monitoring the status of my house is just a click away. As long as I have my smartphone with me, I can manage my system. I also like knowing that my kids and dogs are secure when we aren’t home. They are getting to an age where we could leave them alone at home for a few days when we travel, and with this system we can do that comfortably.
How does Smart Home Monitoring help you keep your family in check?
We can see when the kids are coming into the house and when they are leaving. For example, my son is supposed to be home by 1 am when he’s out with the car. We can easily check when the front door was opened. That in itself is worth a lot, because it’s important to let the teenagers know we’re keeping an eye out for them. We’ve also got sensors on the garage doors, so I anticipate using that to make sure that the kids haven’t left the garage open when they take their bikes. It’s a great way to keep our eye on the kids without nagging them or asking too many questions.
Mara illustrates how we designed an easy-to-use system that lets you set “Rules” in a breeze that adapt to your life. You can ask the lights to come up at sunset anytime of the year, and you can automate your sensors, thermostat and lights together so that when you leave the house, the heat goes down and the lights are turned off. This is followed by a quick SMS text alert re-assuring you that it’s all happened.
For more information about Rogers Smart Home Monitoring, go to www.Rogers.com/smarthome.
How do you think Rogers Smart Home Monitoring could help you make your life easier?
Elise is a regular Redboard contributor.
Home Alone is my all-time favourite Christmas movie. Left to his own devices, young Kevin McAllister manages to fend off house burglars Harry and Marv – otherwise known as the Wet Bandits – by setting a complicated series of traps, which they manage to walk into at every turn.
Like the Wet Bandits, many burglars across the country view the holidays as prime break-in season. As many Canadian families take off on vacation, houses are left filled with new gift items like electronics, jewelry and other valuables. That’s why protecting your home has never been more important.
You may already be aware of Rogers Smart Home Monitoring, a home monitoring and automation service that lets you control sensors, cameras, thermostats, lights and small appliances remotely through your computer or smartphone. So whether you’re visiting the in-laws for a weekend, have taken off to Florida for Christmas break, or you’re skiing with the family this holiday season, you can keep a close watch on your home and be alerted the instant a problem occurs.
Rogers Smart Home Monitoring doesn’t just keep your house safe and secure from outside intruders. It is an ultimate in ‘peace of mind’ technology, monitoring everything from water seepage, carbon monoxide levels, to lighting, and now with a new feature, it allows you to tailor and personalize the system to meet your needs. So if you’re like me and manage to leave your hair straightener on every morning, you can turn it off remotely on your way to work.
And upgrades and enhancements are always being made to the product. Here are just a few new Rogers Smart Home Monitoring features:
- Outdoor wireless night-vision camera: now stay alerted of activity in your own backyard
- Appliance switch: remotely turn any appliance or lamp in your home on and off, with no extra outlet required
- Free Android™, BlackBerry® and iPhone Smart Home Monitoring Apps: Available to all Rogers Smart Home Monitoring customers, these apps let you securely view and control your system from anywhere, using your smartphone or tablet
We’ll continue to update you on news and new features of Rogers Smart Home Monitoring over the coming months. Not only that, we will keep you informed of how some of our customers are experiencing the system and how they’ve tailored Rogers Smart Home Monitoring to meet their families’ needs.
To find out more about Rogers Smart Home Monitoring, go to www.rogers.com/smart
How do you plan to keep your house safe this holiday season?
Michelle is a regular contributor to RedBoard
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According to a recent MoneySense article, a break-in occurs every 90 seconds in Canada. Now more than ever, Canadians should be thinking about how they can protect their home.
We’re always making updates to Smart Home Monitoring so in part 2 of this series, we’re going to give you the low-down on some of the latest enhancements: expanded access to the system with the new BlackBerry app and a new program we’re participating in with Allstate that could help reduce your home insurance premiums.
BlackBerry App now available
You can now access Smart Home Monitoring from any BlackBerry smartphone. In addition to our iPhone app, iPad app and Android app, you can now download the Smart Home Monitoring BlackBerry App from BlackBerry App World.
The app allows you to view and control your Smart Home Monitoring system from your smartphone.
Teaming up with Allstate Canada
Last month, we announced with Allstate Canada a new program for customers who have installed Smart Home Monitoring. If you’re an Allstate customer in a market where Smart Home Monitoring is available, you now have the opportunity to receive a 25 per cent discount on your home insurance premiums.
Allstate customers also receive a free water leak sensor from Rogers with the purchase of a hardware package that includes a touchpad, three window and door sensors and a motion detector.
Some conditions apply. Check out all of the details here.
You can learn more about Smart Home Monitoring from Rogers by visiting www.rogers.com/smarthome.
Allison is a regular contributor to RedBoard
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Last year, we launched Rogers Smart Home Monitoring, a home monitoring and automation service that allows you to control sensors, cameras, thermostats, lights and small appliances no matter where you are using your computer or smartphone. Since then, we’ve been making tons of updates to the system to provide even more services for greater peace of mind.
Over the next few weeks we’ll be doing a three part series to share what’s new with Smart Home Monitoring. Here’s the first post where we take a look at new remote system access options and new ‘smart’ sensors that monitor potentially dangerous and damaging activity in your home.
Android & BlackBerry Apps
The BlackBerry app will be available in just a few weeks.
Water Leak Sensor
To help you avoid the costly damage caused by water leaks and flooding, we have launched a wireless sensor that detects water on a surface.
The sensor is easily placed on a floor, wall or baseboard and when the sensor detects water it immediately communicates with the Smart Home Monitoring system to generate an alarm or emergency alert before damage occurs.
The sensor also monitors itself for low battery levels so you’re always covered.
Carbon Monoxide (CO) Sensor
Carbon Monoxide is an odorless, tasteless and colourless gas that can be toxic to humans and animals when encountered in high concentrations. To help you protect your home and family against this potential threat, we have made a wireless sensor available that gives an early warning of CO poisoning danger by providing visual and audio alarms when potentially dangerous CO levels exist in the home.
The alarm resets automatically when CO is no longer detected and will also detect low battery levels in the sensor and tampering to help customers to ensure it is always on.
Also, should CO levels become dangerous while you are out, the fully integrated wireless transmitter sends alarm and status messages to the Touchpad, which will notify you via text message or email and also the central monitoring station who monitors your home 24/7.
You can learn more about Smart Home Monitoring from Rogers by visiting www.rogers.com/smarthome.
Want to win a Smart Home Monitoring System?
Until May 16, you can enter our contest for a chance to win one of five Smart Home Monitoring systems from Rogers. Go here to enter.
Allison is a regular contributor to RedBoard
No purchase ncessary. Open to residents of Ontario having reached the age of majority. See contest rules for all details.