Can you hear me now?
As much as I love reviewing smart home gadgets, there’s a sense of “sameness” that has emerged in the marketplace over the past year or so. Maybe it’s just part of living in a more mature market segment, but most of the latest smart home gadgets seem to fit in the same few buckets: thermostat, lighting, security camera, lock, etc. Of course, those are all excellent additions to any smart home, but once you’ve gone “all in,” there just aren’t that many product unveils that are truly innovative.
That all changed for me when I read about the Nucleus smart intercom earlier this week, a brilliant little product that’s aimed squarely at young families. The Nucleus is several things: a beautifully modern intercom for the home, a video chatting device that families can use to stay in touch, and (amazingly) a really great looking visual interface for Amazon’s Alexa.
After finishing out above our garage, we’re about to live in an (unexpectedly) large home where an intercom system to keep track of the kids would be amazing; the Nucleus provides an audio intercom, plus an amazing video intercom, all in an elegant device that seems to replace the need for an Echo as well. That last part is intriguing, especially if you’re already considering adding some Echo devices around the home for intelligence and voice control. Having that built-in to an already-useful device like this is pretty killer.
The icing on the cake is the brainlessly simple video chatting that’s built-in, allowing your kids to call their grandparents with just a tap; guilt-tripping your family into childcare for date night has never been easier.
Nucleus just hit the market this week, but if it lives up to the hype (and feature set), its $249 price tag is more than worth it. We hope to have a full review shortly, so stay tuned!