Voice Activation

Johnson Controls Rolls Out Cortana-Embedded Smart Thermostat

Following on the heels of several months of delays, Johnson Controls rolled out its GLAS smart thermostat for pre-orders last week.

According to a report in ZDNet, the thermostat will start shipping on August 24 and will sell on Amazon and Johnson Controls’ websites for $319. The device is embedded with Cortana, Microsoft’s voice-activated digital assistant. The two hinted at the device last summer, and in January Johnson Controls said it would be available for pre-order in March — but it didn’t meet that schedule. The GLAS thermostat comes with a Snapdragon 410E embedded platform, an OLED touchscreen that can monitor indoor and outdoor air quality and can check the weather. The thermostat can detect when users are in the home or in the office and adjust the settings based on that. The thermostat can also provide customers with information about traffic and their schedules via Cortana.  Along with the thermostat is an app that lets users set temperatures, monitor air quality and do more things.  The device also works with Amazon’s Alexa and Google’s Google Assistant, noted ZDNet.

This isn’t the only partnership Microsoft has announced in recent days. Last week Amazon and Microsoft announced a public preview of their plans to integrate Alexa with Microsoft Cortana, a plan announced last summer. In a blog post, Amazon said users can now use Amazon Echo devices to access many of Cortana’s features, such as checking a calendar, booking a meeting and reading email, among other tasks. In order to access Cortana on an Echo device, users say “Alexa, open Cortana,” and they will be connected directly to Cortana. Customers with a compatible Windows 10 device or Harman Kardon Invoke speaker can now access features they use on Alexa, such as controlling smart home devices, checking the status of orders and accessing tens of thousands of skills built by third-party developers. To get started, customers, say, “Hey Cortana, open Alexa” or click the microphone button and say, “open Alexa.”

 

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