Gadgets sensibo-sky

Published on October 5th, 2017 | by Greg


Sensibo Sky: Make Your Air Conditioner Smarter

Many people with smartphones have just dipped their toes lightly into smarthome technology- home automation gear like lighting controls. One of the biggest entrants into the category are the multiple different speaker options that offer a new way to interact with your other appliances and systems- but you still need products to interact with! And it’s likely that one of the most antiquated pieces of technology that you might want to control in your home or apartment is your air conditioner.

The Sensibo Sky is one a new set of wi-fi enabled, Alexa and Google Home-friendly A/C controllers that promises simple digital command over your analog unit. For those with whole-home, sophisticated HVAC units, a smart thermostat is probably the way to go- but this covers everyone else with a remote-controlled air conditioner (like most folks in New York City who get their heat via boilers but have window-mounted air conditioning for the summer). Summer might seem to be coming to a close up North, but there’s still many times over the next few months when you might want to get a bit of cooling relief, and especially if you live in warmer climes than Manhattan or if you have a remote-controlled heater unit as well.

The hardware here is fairly nondescript, but this is the second generation in fact, and it doesn’t require a hub or any additional hardware. Setup is fairly simple and the app is cleaner than most with both iOS and Android versions available- plus a very unusual web-based control you can fire up from your laptop or desktop computer. We liked the voice controls too- within minutes we were able to set a temperature and switch our A/C on and off from the comfort of our couch, with no remote control needed, even in the dark. You can setup seven-day scheduling as well, or detect your location using geo-fencing and automatically turn off the unit when people leave (or have it come on before you come home).

The Sensibo Sky beats most of the competition in the market that we’ve seen, and is compatible with a huge range of models (and makes it easy to see if yours will work). And if you’re the sophisticated, programmer type, you’ll appreciate Sensibo’s support for IFTTT and their open API tools that make integrations available across multiple platforms. And you can grab a single unit for around $119 online and in stores, a great price for a solid solution- or pick up a multi-pack with two, three, or more. The only real downside we noticed- the Sky is available only in black, though all of the cabling is white.

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About the Author

Greg dreamed up the idea for the Truly Network while living in Hawaii, which began with a single site called TrulyObscure. In 2010, when advertisers and readers were requesting coverage beyond the scope of that site, TrulyNet was launched, reaching a broader audience over a variety of niche sites. Formerly the head technology correspondent for the Des Moines Register at age 16, he has since lived and worked in five states and two countries, helping a list of organizations and companies that includes the United States Census Bureau, TripAdvisor, Events Photo Group, Berlitz, and Computer Geeks. He also served as the Content Strategy Manager for HearPlanet, a multi-platform app that has reached over a million users and has been featured in the New York Times, Hemispheres Magazine, National Geographic Adventure, Fox Business News, PC Magazine, and even Appleā€™s own iPhone ads. Greg has written as a restaurant critic and feature journalist for a number of national and international publications, including City Weekend Magazine, Red Egg Magazine, the Newton Daily News, Capital Change Magazine, and an arm of China Daily, Beijing Weekend. In addition, he has served as a consulting editor for the Foreign Language Press of Beijing, as well as a writer and editor for the George Washington University Hatchet, the school newspaper of his alma mater. Originally from Iowa, Greg is currently living in the West Village of Manhattan.

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