Modern smartphones are quite good at finding their bearings. Between GPS and WiFi, most handsets can pinpoint themselves to within 50 feet. This is undoubtedly impressive, but largely useless within the confines of most buildings. You can think of Dot as a tiny Bluetooth signpost. With this added context, your phone can launch apps in helpful places and get involved with home automation. Dot has a few useful tricks of its own, too.
The idea is to place multiple Dot beacons around your home. The device is small enough to balance on your fingertip, and it comes with an adhesive backing. Once installed, the beacons can be configured via the Dot smartphone app.
Essentially, this means assigning tasks to each Dot. When you get out of bed in the morning, you might want to receive news headlines or the weather forecast. In your car, the app could open Google Maps for navigation and Spotify for music. Another option is to leave digital stickies, which appear as notifications when you walk past a Dot — ideal for remembering the milk.
The functionality does not stop there. When you arrive home, Dot can switch on smart bulbs and tune your thermostat to the optimum temperature. The beacon also has its own multi-color notification light, which can provide live status updates on outside conditions or the freshness of food in the fridge.
Dot uses 4.0 Bluetooth, which offers a range of 150 feet. The internal battery lasts upwards of six months and can be replaced easily. Multiple users can interact with each Dot, and the open platform will allow developers to hook into this hyper-local technology.
Dot is still in the pre-production stage, but with an impressive number of integrations lined up and a Kickstarter campaign in full swing, the future looks bright. Backers can currently secure one Dot for $20, with small discounts for multi-packs.
How would you use Dot around your home? Tell us in the comments!