Sensors are quickly becoming a category of external hardware gadgets unto themselves, and Slovenia-based CubeSensors is creating a set that essentially monitors your living space to provide you with aggregate data about noise, temperature, humidity, light, air quality and more to provide clues about how your environment might be affecting you and those around you.
CubeSensors are small hardware cubes that pack a bevy of sensors within, at just 2-inches long, wide and tall. They’re powered by an internal rechargeable battery, so that they don’t need nasty plugs to work, and they stream their data over Wi-Fi to a cloud-based dashboard to track information and provide it to users in real-time. They can be set to provide alerts, and the data can either be made public or set to private access for keeping it within the household.
The info collected by the CubeSensors, which ship in a starter pack with either two or three devices and a bridge to link them to your home network, can be viewed through a single app that resides on a user’s smartphone. The Cubes can be set to send alarms when certain conditions are met, like when noise or temperature reaches a certain level, and you can view historical data to track the effectiveness of any methods you take to change the influence of environmental factors.
Each sensor includes an accelerometer, a thermometer, a barometer, an air quality meter, and a humidity sensor. They’re being sold with the pre-order model that has become popular for hardware creators, with the MYO armband and Lockitron being two recent similar examples. The difference here is that CubeSensors is asking for $10 up front as a down payment, whether your order the $249 starter pack with two cubes, or the $349 pack that comes with four. CubeSensors CEO Ales Spetic says that $10 is fully refundable, however, and the startup did win the Best Hardware award at this year’s Launch Festival.
This kind of environment monitoring devices aren’t entirely new: Russian startup Lapka offers sensors that contain similar detection capabilities, which we saw at CES this year. But the unobtrusive wireless design, with a system that’s expandable to accommodate a variety of different types of environments is very interesting. There’s also the possibility that the data gathered by the CubeSensors could eventually be made to integrated with other devices and apps, adding to the dream of a sophisticated connected smartphone.