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Samsung’s Flex Connect Programme Aims to Reduce Load on Power Grids

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Samsung’s Flex Connect Programme Aims to Reduce Load on Power Grids


Samsung on Monday announced the launch of a new demand response programme called SmartThings Energy Flex Connect. As part of this initiative, users can enrol their devices and automate the management of energy consumption, especially during scenarios when power demand is at its highest. Samsung says devices can ‘communicate’ with the power grid and automatically reduce the consumption when a strain is detected – a move aimed at fostering a sustainable energy grid, according to the firm.

Samsung’s SmartThings Energy Flex Connect

The South Korean firm said in a newsroom post that the SmartThings app can be used to enrol energy-intensive devices such as thermostats, plugs, air conditioners, lights, TVs and other appliances through SmartThings Energy – the company’s energy management solution. This enables users to monitor devices for power consumption, courtesy of a partnership with utility providers and grid-service programs.

Samsung says that Flex Connect is capable of automatically toggling the AI Energy Mode on compatible appliances which claims to reduce energy consumption by up to 70 percent. It can enable and disable the following modes: Maximum saving, Carbon Intensity and Custom. Samsung says devices with Flex Connect support will automatically limit their power consumption when a Demand Response signal is received.

It also offers a power off function, automatically turning off devices when not in use. According to Samsung, it also supports third-party lights and plugs. Furthermore, Flex Connect is also claimed to be capable of smart temperature adjustment for thermostats.

If users do not have compatible appliances whose power consumption can be tweaked automatically, the SmartThings app will send alerts to the user for manual intervention during peak hours.

The initiative has been launched in California and New York, allowing users to not only save energy, reduce their bills and limit their carbon footprint, but also earn Samsung Reward Points along the way – an incentive to use Flex Connect.

“SmartThings Energy empowers our users with tools and information to monitor their energy consumption and save money, and launching Flex Connect is a crucial step in creating a greener and smarter world.” Chanwoo Park, Executive VP, Samsung Electronics, said in a prepared statement.


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Amazon Prime Day 2024 Sale Deals on Echo, Fire TV Stick and More

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Amazon Prime Day 2024 Sale Deals on Echo, Fire TV Stick and More


Amazon Prime Day 2024 sale will start in India on July 20 and will last through July 21. A variety of items will be available at discounted rates, considerably lower than their usual prices. Products like personal electronic items such as smartphones, earphones, tablets and more will be available at lower prices, as well as with some lucrative bank and exchange deals. Some of these offers will also be available on smart home appliances like speakers, streaming devices and more.

Amazon Prime Day 2024 sale deals on Amazon products

Amazon announced in a press note that a number of its self-branded smart home appliances will be available at significantly discounted rates during the upcoming Amazon Prime Day 2024 sale. People can get Fire TV Stick, Echo smart speakers with Alexa support, and other Alexa smart home combinations with up to 55 percent discount.

Customers can buy the Amazon Echo Pop at the lowest effective price of Rs. 2,449, while the Echo Show 5 (2nd Gen) can be bought at the lowest effective price of Rs. 3,999. These are currently retailing in the country at Rs. 3,999 and Rs. 8,999, respectively. Offers and deals on the Amazon Echo Show 8 (2nd Generation) can bring down the effective price to Rs. 8,999 during the sale. This is currently priced in the country at Rs. 13,999.

The e-commerce site is also extending offers on combo deals on Amazon smart home products. An Echo Dot (5th Generation) and a Wipro Simple Setup 9W LED Smart Bulb can together be bought at a price of Rs. 4,749, while the combination of an Echo Dot (4th Generation) with clock and a Wipro 9W LED smart colour bulb can be purchased at Rs. 3,749 during the upcoming sale.

People can also get the Echo Pop alongside a Wipro Simple Setup 9W LED Smart Bulb for Rs. 2,749 and the Echo Pop together with an Amazon Smart Plug at Rs. 2,948.

During the sale, customers can also get the Fire TV Stick at the lowest possible price of Rs. 2,199, down 56 percent from its usual price of Rs. 4,499. The Fire TV Stick Lite with Alexa Voice Remote Lite can be purchased at the lowest effective price of Rs. 1,999, while the Fire TV Stick 4K can be bought with a 43 percent discount at Rs. 3,999, down from its retail price of Rs. 5,999. Interested buyers can also get smart television with inbuilt Fire TV with discounts of up to 50 percent.



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Apple HomePod Mini Introduced in New Midnight Colour Option in India

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Apple HomePod Mini Introduced in New Midnight Colour Option in India


Apple’s HomePod Mini has been unveiled in a new colour option. The speaker was initially unveiled alongside the iPhone 12 series in October 2020. It comes with a light-emitting touch panel on top which allows users to control volume and supports Ultra WideBand (UWB) technology. It is powered by an in-house S5 chipset and an additional U1 chip to enable UWB support. The smart speaker is compatible with an iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch, as well as car speakers with the CarPlay function.

Apple HomePod Mini colour options, price in India, availability

The Apple HomePod Mini, priced at Rs. 10,900, has been introduced in a new colour option named Midnight. Apple says that this variant is made with 100 percent recycled mesh fabric. It will be available for sale in India, the US and 30 other countries worldwide starting July 17.

The new colourway is similar to the Space Grey option that the HomePod Mini initially launched with. After the new Midnight shade was unveiled, the online listing of the speaker did not display the grey option. Therefore, the new colour option seems to have replaced the grey one.

Alongside the new Midnight shade, the Apple HomePod Mini is also currently available in the India in blue, orange, white and yellow colourways.

Apple HomePod Mini specifications, features

The Apple HomePod Mini is powered by the Apple S5 chipset and an additional U1 chip to enable UWB support which allows it to track other Apple devices for media controls as well as interacting with other smart home devices. It also sports a touch-sensitive light-emitting panel on top which allows users to control the volume of the device.

The HomePod Mini allows people to use the Intercom feature to send messages from one unit to another. It is compatible with an iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch, as well as car speakers with the CarPlay function. The smart speaker is equipped with Siri but the requests to the voice assistant are not associated with an Apple ID. 



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JioTag Air Launched in India With Support for Find My Feature on iPhone

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JioTag Air Launched in India With Support for Find My Feature on iPhone


JioTag Air was launched in India as the successor to JioTag – Reliance Jio’s Bluetooth-enabled tracker, on Tuesday. One of the key new features of the device is its compatibility with Apple’s Find My network Feature which enables iPhone users to locate lost or stolen items such as keys, luggage, wallets, and even pets – items that are prone to get misplaced. It becomes the latest product launched by the company, following the debut of the JioFinance app last month.

JioTag Air Price in India

JioTag Air is available for purchase in India at an introductory price of Rs. 1,499 via JioMart, Reliance Digital, and Amazon India. The device comes in three colour options: blue, grey, and red. Buyers can also avail cashback while making the transaction via CredUPI, Paytm, and select credit cards.

JioTag Air Specifications

JioTag Air supports two tracking apps. On Android, it can be used with the JioThings app, whereas Apple users can use it in tandem with the Find My network app on devices such as the iPhone, iPad and Mac – a feature which its predecessor wasn’t equipped with. Alternatively, the JioThings app can be used on Apple’s platforms too via the App Store. However, only one app can be used at a time with the JioTag Air.

It is compatible with iPhone models running iOS 14 or later, and Android smartphones on Android 9 and later firmware. The tracker is equipped with Bluetooth 5.3 and comes with an in-built speaker that can play sounds in the 90-120 dB range. In terms of dimensions, it measures 38x38x7mm and weighs 10g.

The Bluetooth tracker also gets support for Apple’s Lost Mode that allows the user to automatically receive notifications on a paired Apple device when a lost device is located within the network. It comes with a 12-month battery, with an extra battery and a lanyard also bundled with the JioTag Air in the retail box.


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