It’s 2015, Marty McFly and Doc Brown should be arriving soon. Which means it’s also time to show them the future of home automation. We’re almost there, once Netatmo’s smart camera goes online.
Aptly named Welcome, the cylindrical camera has humble hardware that includes a 5MP sensor that has a 130-degree field of view.
Its sole purpose isn’t just for recording the shenanigans at home, all of which are stored on a microSD card. It can also do facial recognition, telling you who's home or which of your three kids has broken his or her curfew. On the creepier side of things, it’ll also detect unfamiliar faces and alert you to potential stalkers lurking outside your house.
You can’t trick the Welcome either. Instead of uploading a recent photo, the Welcome takes a photo at the start and continues snapping to recognise the subtle changes on your face. Yes, it’ll eventually learn and recognise those nasty pimples or double eyebags from a late night out.
What makes the Welcome a real attraction is its integration with IFTTT, allowing you to preset conditions on other IFTTT-enabled devices to trigger once the facial recognition kicks in. Flash your face at the Welcome, and you could have the thermostat up to the comfortable temperature or have the lights up once you’re in.
With some creative programming, the Welcome could even recognise your kid’s face, trigger the WeMo switch connected to your TV to power it down and send the kids crying to bed.
The Welcome is complemented by a set of motion sensors, named Tag. Durable and weatherproof, the Tag notifies you when someone enters the room. Which is not just useful if you’re the seeker in hide-and-seek, but also very effective as an early warning system against intruders.
Pricing for the Netatmo Welcome or Tag hasn’t been announced yet, but we do know that it’ll be available sometime in Q2 2015. The Netatmo home system works on both iOS and Android devices.