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System Integration for the Connected Home

Networking

Zigbee Claims First Multi-Band IoT Mesh Network Technology

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The Zigbee Alliance announces Zigbee PRO 2017-- the first mesh network capable of operating on two ISM frequency bands simultaneously, sub-GHz 800-900MHz for regional requirements and 2.4GHz for global acceptance.

Zigbee Pro 2017Zigbee PRO is the underlying network technology with support for full-stack interoperable devices certified under Zigbee 3.0. Designed to connect smart devices, Zigbee PRO 2017 promises flexibility and design choice for manufacturers, consumers and municipalities wanting to connect products across homes, buildings and cities.

“PRO 2017 is the ideal wireless solution to cast large IoT networks across buildings, business parks, large facilities, cities and venues challenged by connectivity issues such as reinforced concrete and steel studs,” the alliance says. “The deployment potential is tremendous for smart homes, smart buildings and smart cities.”

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Gefen Intros 4K UHD Extenders

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Gefen announces a pair of new 4K Ultra HD Extenders-- the GTB-UHD600-HBT and GTB-UHD600-HBTL, able to extend the full bandwidth of HDMI 2.0 over UTP/STP cabling.

Gefen ExtendersAccording to the company, combined with HDBaseT technology the extenders have compression technology to extend an HDMI 2.0 signal in resolutions up to 4096 x 2160 at 60Hz and 4:4:4 chroma subsampling. Other HDMI 2.0 features, such as HDR, are also carried along the signel cable linking the sender and receiver units.

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Metra Home Theatre Intros EDID Regenerator

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Metra Home Theatre announces a means to maintain high quality audio/video output despite issues occurring along the signal path connecting HDMI devices-- the Junior+ (HDM-JRPLUS) EDID problem solver.

Junior+The easy to install solution promises to minimise system failures and increase compatibility between devices with different data tolerances, as well as devices with multiple brands of HDMI-enabled electronics.

The Junior+ reduces the effective capacitive loading "Rise Time" issues commonly found on the DDC channel (EDID) of the HDMI interface. This can be caused by cables, printed circuit boards and environmental conditions. The Junior+ reduces the cables' capacitive issues loading by 50%, a correction solving issues such as audio dropouts, HDCP not supported, mode not supported, mode out of range, long sync times and the "black screen."

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Eero Wifi Enters Second Generation

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The Eero mesh-based wifi system enters its second generation, with an updated router claiming to be twice as fast and twice as powerful as its predecessor even as it maintains the same form factor.

EeroLike the first Eero router, the new version remains a router, wireless access point and range extender inside a small, white box. The update adds tri-band technology, allowing it to broadcast on 3 wireless bands simultaneously. The Eero can use any of the 3 bands to send data to device or communication between nodes, as per network demands.

Another addition is support for Thread, the smart home communications protocol developed by the Google-owned Nest. Thread is reportedly easier to deploy than ZigBee and Z-Wave but so far no device on the market supports it, making the Eero update something of a future-proof home automation device should Thread grow into a viable smart home networking protocol.

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KanexPro Launches UltraSlim HDMI 2.0 Extenders

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KanexPro extenderInfoComm 2017 sees KanexPro announce a set of 4K/60Hz extenders-- a transmitter and receiver set with support for HDR, 4:4: Chroma (8-bit colour) and flexible PoH (Power over HDBaseT).

The UltraSlim 4K/60 HDMI 2.0 Extender over HDBaseT (EXT-70SL18G and EXT-100SL18G) is a transmitter and receiver set designed for residential and commercial 4K UltraHD signal distribution. It allows installers to extend 4K UHD signals up to 70m, or obtain full HD 1080p/60 up to 100m over single Cat5e/6 cable.

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Just Add Power AV-Over-IP at InfoComm

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Just Add Power (J+P) showcases its 3G Ultra HD over IP transmitter and receiver range at InfoComm 2017, with products designed for any size UHD distribution and matrixing application.

Just Add PowerThe range offers a variety of devices enabling installers to mix and match models to better manage hardware budgets over 4K HDMI projects, including 4K HDR distribution.

"The 3G Ultra HD over IP family uses the same switches, cabling, and control system drivers, while offering a range of features and performance that allow integrators to build upon their existing systems-- much like they would with building blocks," the company says. "As demand for 4K signal distribution increases, integrators can update and integrate new J+P devices into existing systems and overcome the difficulty of distributing 4K in installations that combine new 4K displays and legacy 1080p sources."

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Asus Blows Hole in Blue Cave Router

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The Asus Blue Cave is an AC2600 dual-band wifi router unlike any other-- the design features a antenna-less design with a hole in the middle, making it look like a Dyson bladeless fan.

Asus Blue CaveFirst presented at Computex 2017, the Blue Cave promises "smooth wifi" and "smart protection." It runs on the latest Intel wifi chipset, and includes Trend Micro protection for "every connected smart devices on the network, including IoT devices." A companion app provides granular control (such as network usage, family time limits and app internet access) while IFTTT support provides means for users to create formulas to run their smart homes and digital lives.

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