In a smart move from Microsoft, their latest unveiling in the smart home sector is targeted at the aesthetically conscious.
Glas is a smart thermostat which is more than just smart, it’s also beautiful. The device, which was revealed by Microsoft in a youtube video last Wednesday, is designed to compete with the likes of the Amazon Nest and Honeywell Lyric, but with a sleek, modern edge. While the primary competitors on the market are fairly mundane, essentially old style, box-on-the-wall thermometers with a screen, Microsoft opted for a standalone screen on a mount projecting from the wall. The semi-transparent screen, as seen in the video, offers a crisp, bright display, visible from across the room. Overall, the design comes off intelligent and high-tech.
Microsoft partnered with Johnson Controls, a leader in the HVAC industry to produce the device, which the video claims will offer leading energy savings. Microsoft provided the Windows IoT core and Microsoft Azure to keep the device cloud-connected. As with the Nest, Lyric, and Ecobee, Glas features voice activation, with Microsoft’s Cortana.
The smart features, as seen in the video, include:
- Continuous monitoring and display of indoor and outdoor conditions, including temperature, weather, and humidity
- Air quality monitoring
- Energy savings reporting and summary
- Scheduling for heating and cooling
- Home and Away settings
Until Microsoft releases additional materials about the device, we can only guess at the extent of its capabilities and level of integration with Microsoft’s other cloud and Internet of Things products.
Microsoft is marketing the smart-looking device to businesses as well as homes. Aside from Windows/Cortana users, the screen will probably find an audience among the aesthetically conscious. The device will fit in well at upscale establishments, clean, high-tech health care facilities and stylish homes and apartments.
Microsoft’s video proclaims that the Glas is “designed to make our spaces ours.” A statement as applicable to style and design as to the power of personalization with a device like this.