A former Apple exec is selling the ultimate smart home for $35 million

There are plenty of ways to make your home smarter on the cheap, but if you really want a fully automated home, it will be a serious investment. Companies are working on integrating everything with hubs and apps, but even starter kits cost a couple hundred dollars, unless you take the most bare-bones approach.

But billionaires can drop all kinds of dough getting their home-automation systems exactly to their liking. Case in point: Michael Barnick, a retired Apple exec who just completed his very own smart home … and promptly put it on the market, because his children grew up and moved out during the time it took to build. Ten years in the making, it’s outfitted with all the smart devices you can dream of and probably a few more.

The 10,100-square-foot home has four bedrooms and ocean views. Located on 3.7 acres of property in Hope Ranch, California, the house includes amenities you’d expect from a house that costs tens of millions of dollars, like a 12-person movie theater, three fireplaces, a huge kitchen, and a spa-style bathroom. There are a few unique features, too, like the yoga studio. But it’s Barnick’s passion for automation that really makes the house unique.

Driving through the front gates activates the lights, opens the garage, and turns on the fountain; when the shower turns on, so does the towel warmer. “For me it’s all about the technology and doing it well, not flashy,” Barnick tells The Wall Street Journal.

He got so into home automation that he started a company, Quantum Integration, which installs systems in other houses.

If you decide to buy the house (it’s going for $35 million), let us know. That automated towel warmer sounds awesome.

Product Review

Making a smart home can be a DIY job, but security should be left to the pros

Sure, you can DIY a smart home system, but when it comes to security, you should seriously consider professional monitoring and service. That’s where Vivint comes in. Is it worth the lofty price?
Smart Home

With focus on interoperability, is Nevo Butler a smarter home hub?

Universal Electronics is the latest company getting into the smart home market, announcing at CES 2019 that it intends to market the Nevo Butler, a new smart home hub with onboard A.I. and voice control technology.
Home Theater

Yamaha’s MusicCast Vinyl 500 turntable spreads analog joy throughout your home

It can be tough to listen to your favorite analog tunes anywhere besides the room where your turntable is located. With its MusicCast Vinyl 500 turntable, Yamaha allows you to stream your tunes throughout your home.
Smart Home

Want a smarter home? Ditch the keys with these great smart locks

A good smart lock should offer a combination of security and convenience. Fortunately, these devices keep your home protected, your family safe, and your belongings secure from possible intruders.
Smart Home

Put away that sponge and let us help you pick the best dishwasher for your buck

Tired of doing dishes by hand? Take a look at our picks of the four best dishwashers currently available and let a machine do the dirty work for you. They’ll do a much better job, anyway.
Smart Home

You can play NPR’s ‘Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me’ on your smart speaker

You can play "Wait Wait Don't Tell Me" on Amazon Echo speakers or Google Home devices with the new Wait Wait Quiz. It's hosted by Peter Sagal and Bill Kurtis and will be updated every week with new questions.
Smart Home

Walabot Home, a device aimed at keeping seniors safe, expands its capabilities

When you have to be away from your elderly family members, Walabot Home can serve as your surrogate. This device can detect when your loved one falls and will call for help — no wearables or user input required.
Smart Home

Allergies acting up? Thes best air purifiers on the market can offer relief

Indoor air is often more contaminated than the air outside, which can cause an array of health issues over time. Luckily, these air purifiers can easily rid your home or office of unwanted allergens and contaminants.
Smart Home

Hackers hijack Nest camera, issue fake warning of North Korea missile attack

A Nest security camera hijacked by hackers who used the device to issue a fake warning about an incoming North Korean nuclear missile attack heading toward Los Angeles, Chicago, and Ohio.
Smart Home

Starbucks coffee delivery lands in 6 more cities via Uber Eats

Starbucks is in the process of expanding its coffee delivery service far beyond Miami. Available via the Uber Eats app, the service has just launched in San Francisco, with five additional cities joining in the coming weeks.
Computing

Think someone's leeching off your Wi-Fi connection? Here's how to find out

It's important to find out immediately if anyone is stealing your bandwidth. Here's how to tell if someone is stealing your Wi-Fi using a few simple tools, along with some suggestions on improving security.
Smart Home

Sing with Freddie Mercury with the ‘Ay-Oh with Bohemian Rhapsody’ Alexa skill

20th Century Fox announced a new Alexa Skill for Freddie Mercury fans. To celebrate the digital release of Bohemian Rhapsody and a National Day of "Ay-Oh," fans can download the Ay-Oh with Bohemian Rhapsody Skill.
Smart Home

Instant Pot Duo vs. Lux: Which multicooker is really better?

The Instant Pot Duo and the Instant Pot Lux are two of Instant Pots' best-selling models and both are great options. But what’s the difference between the two? Which one is better? Let's break it down.
Smart Home

Amazon confirms it has 10,000 employees working on Amazon Alexa

Amazon has 10,000 employees who work on Alexa development. Thousands of people focus on building Alexa's knowledge base while others work on Alexa's personality, machine learning, interaction, conversational skills, and other features.