Already surpassing fifty percent of a $40,000 funding goal on Kickstarter in the first day, the ivee Sleek is a Wi-Fi connected device that’s designed to provide voice control for common tasks within a smart home. Moving beyond the company’s lineup of bedside alarm clocks with voice activation, the ivee Sleek can connect to smart devices within the home like a Nest thermostat or a Lockitron deadbolt door lock. Rather than accessing an application on your smartphone or tablet to control the home’s functions, you would simply use a voice command to change the temperature or turn off all the lights in the home.
In addition to providing voice control for the smart devices within the home, the ivee Sleek also acts as a personal assistant similar to Siri on the iPhone. The ivee Sleek can tell you about the current weather conditions, recommend leaving early for work due to a reported accident on the road, provide up to the minute stock prices and even wish you a happy birthday. In addition, users can set reminders for later in the day as well as alarms. Within the admin interface, the user can add their mobile phone number to receive text notifications for those reminders.
If the ivee Sleek is moved into the bedroom, it can also be used as a traditional alarm clock with LCD display. In addition to providing FM radio for music, the ivee Sleek can play relaxing sounds that will help you fall asleep like the constant waves of an ocean. Also useful for the kids, the ivee Sleek can read a bedtime story out loud as they are falling asleep.
In order to relay a voice command to the ivee Sleek, the user first says “Hello ivee” to listen for the user’s voice. The microphone array within the device makes it possible to silence ambient noise in the area and focus on the user’s voice up to 15 feet away. There are also light and temperature sensors within the hardware to take note of the nearby ambient light as well as the current temperature in the room. Internally, the hardware includes a 400 MHz ARM9 processor, 128MB of RAM, 256MB of flash storage, a 45mm speaker, a 4.3″ LCD display and 802.11 Wi-Fi b/g connectivity. Similar to any mobile device, the ivee Sleek includes a USB connection for charging the battery.
As more people start to use the ivee Sleek, the development team will be able to make the device smarter over time. In addition to smart thermostats, locks and lights, the ivee Sleek will be able to control smart vacuums, scales, blinds, plugs, pedometers and health monitors as well. Regarding price, the device will eventually retail for $199, but the current price for early Kickstarter backers is $179. Assuming the project is heavily funded, the team will be working on additional functionality at launch including movies times, Internet radio and a calendar function.
According to the Kickstarter project page, the team is targeting a four-month time frame to launch with the first batch of ivee Sleek devices heading out to backers by October 2013. As with all projects on Kickstarter, be aware that manufacturing issues can cause significant delays in the launch of a new product. However, it’s likely that this will be less of an issue with the ivee Sleek due to the company’s history with the production of a similar product line.