New tech for home sweet home


A black, tan, and white dog with his head tilted and tongue hanging out of his mouth

A groundbreaking TV, smart exterior lighting and GPS trackers for pets are among the latest innovations introduced at the Consumer Electronics Show.

At the 2019 Consumer Electronics Show, manufacturers rolled out new products by the dozen. Among them were many innovations for the home. Here are just a few you may want to add to your wish list.

A TV that discreetly rolls away

Anyone who despises a big black rectangle in their living room décor will welcome the 65-inch LG 4K OLED TV R. At last year’s show, LG teased consumers with a prototype TV screen that rolls down into compact base when not in use. This year, they announced it will be available for sale in the second half of 2019.

The base that conceals the screen when it’s rolled up doubles as a large speaker. The TV also features a “line mode” that only displays about one-quarter of the panel for when you just want music or mood-setting sounds like a crackling fireplace or rain. (Price not announced. Also see the Forbes list, Best of All the TVS from CES 2019, here.)

Smart exterior lighting to enhance home security

The folks that made a name for themselves with video doorbells rolled out Ring Smart Lighting. This collection features outdoor motion-activated lights that talk to one another.

Smart Lights work with Ring cameras and notify you via smartphone whenever motion is detected. With wired, low-voltage and battery-powered lights, you can light up any place around your home. ($18-$70/available March 2019)

Ring also introduced the Door View Cam, which is getting rave reviews for two reasons. First, it doesn’t require wiring. Second, it can be installed in existing peepholes. Get an in-depth review here.

A smarter door lock

One of Tech Hive’s best picks from the 2019 show is the Array by Hampton Connected Lock. It works with your home’s Wi-Fi, eliminating the need for extra equipment to operate remotely. Lock or unlock the door three ways: using the key pad, from your smart device or with a conventional key. What makes this lock stand out is the solar panel that continually charges the battery and conceals the keypad. ($300)

Take the tunes outside

On the patio, poolside, or even in the pool, the Cylo Cannonball Bluetooth Speaker brings the music out where you party and play. In addition to being resistant to water, dirt, and sand, this 4-inch, spherical speaker floats. ($100)

GPS for dogs and cats

Tractive lets you know exactly where your furry friend is, in real time, on your smart phone. A tracker on your pet’s collar sends GPS data to you every two to three seconds. Set up a virtual fence—­like around your backyard—and you’ll get instant notification if he’s gone past the boundary. ($75 plus subscription fee)

Consumers helps more than 1,000 members finance land, homes, and home improvement projects each year. When you need a mortgage or home equity line of credit, call us at 800-991-2221. We’re here to help you get the home of your dreams!


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