When it comes to tablets everyone is talking about the iPad. Or maybe even the Galaxy Tab or Microsoft Surface 2. But Archos, an Android device maker, is taking tablets to the next level by connecting them to home networks and more.
Collectively dubbed Archos connected objects, the new products work -- including the 7-inch Smart Home tablet --with both Android and iOS platforms to offer real-time information from anywhere. The devices use Bluetooth low energy connectivity.
“Mobile devices have become the center of our life and our demand for instant access to information creates the need for even more interconnectivity,” said Loic Poirier, CEO of Archos. “Archos’ new lineup of connected objects exemplifies the ability to share and access information and represents our vision of creating a universe where all devices complement and work together.”
The Connected Home
The Archos Smart Home app and the Smart Home tablet offer a gateway that combines Android with multiple connected objects. The proprietary app and 7-inch home gateway make it possible for a user to customize actions based on different scenarios or triggers such as turning on a light and recording video as soon as a motion sensor is activated.
The Archos ecosystem of Connected Home Objects includes a mini cam, motion ball, movement tag, weather tag and smart plug. The company plans to unveil this system of products, along with a weather station, during the Consumer Electronics Show 2014 in Las Vegas that runs from Jan. 7-10. Archos is also planning to unveiling a slew of sub-$100 smart watches at the show.
The Archos Weather Station provides both indoor and outdoor information including CO2 levels, humidity, temperature, atmospheric pressure and environmental noise levels. Similar to the Smart Home app, the proprietary Weather Station app will showcase home and national weather information while recording, tracking and graphing all data for historic comparison and analysis.
The Connected Self
Meanwhile, the Archos Connected Self app will serve as the backbone application for all connected self devices and will provide key metrics for quick health assessment, display graphs to track activity over time and enable up to eight different users to set goals to increase motivation.
The app includes a connected scale, an activity tracker, and a blood pressure monitor. The Archos Connected Scale recognizes four difference users, measures body shape based on mass and height, tracks body fat mass to help users lose weight, and is equipped with onboard memory to prevent data loss between synchronizations.
The Archos Activity Tracker monitors daily footsteps, calories burned and automatically displays time when synchronized with a smartphone. And the Archos Blood Pressure Monitor is equipped with memory for over 40 different measurements and also displays heart beat information.
We asked analyst Rob Enderle for his take on the new announcements. He told us Archos is the absolute best tablet company you’ve never heard of.
“Archos is kind of the stereotypical engineering-driven company. They build a really nice product but have never figured out marketing so few ever hear of them or consider them an option,” Enderle said. “They are kind of geeky and are favored by those that love and want to tinker with technology. This latest announcement is their most comprehensive and ambitious yet, tying their tablets more solidly into home automation and connectivity. If the guys in Big Bang Theory were real, this would be the solution they would buy.”