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Leeo Smart Alert Nightlight review: $100 is cheap if it saves your house from burning down


Okay, so perhaps my headline is bit excessive. The Leeo Sensible Alert Nightlight isn’t a robotic fireplace extinguisher (though Leeo CEO and co-founder Adam Gettings’ background consists of designing robots for SWAT groups and different first responders). However the Leeo actually can forestall your home from burning down, and that renders this $100 nightlight very cheap certainly.

Up to date November 20, 2019 to report that Leeo has introduced that will probably be shutting down the servers for this gadget, successfully rendering them inoperative aside from the LED nightlight, which can flip white.

leeo shutdown Michael Brown / IDG

An e-mail from Leeo to its customers (enlarge to learn).

A smoke detector can save your life and property if a fireplace breaks out, and a carbon monoxide detector can save your life. However for those who’re not house to listen to these alarms go off, they’re not very helpful. One different is to put in a home-security system that gives distant monitoring, however ADT, Vivint, and comparable corporations cost at the least $15 monthly for that service.

Purchase a Leeo for $100 and if it detects your smoke or CO detector going off, the Leeo service will ship you a message by way of the app, full with a recording of the alarm sounding off. Contact one button to name your native 911 (native to your property, to not the place you might be on the time), or contact one other to point a false alarm. Replace: Leeo can now additionally hear for the sound of a water leak detector firing off.

In the event you don’t take motion instantly, the Leeo service will robo-call your emergency contact listing till somebody not solely solutions, however takes motion (for the reason that name may go to voicemail). The decision will play the recorded sound and ask the individual to press 1 in the event that they assume it’s a smoke (or CO) detector, to press 2 in the event that they assume it’s a false alarm, or to press three to listen to the sound once more.

The Leeo did produce a few false CO alarms.

The app message (see instance under) informs you of the placement of the alarm, however the robo-call doesn’t. I hope Leeo adjustments that in brief order, as a result of if the individuals in your contact listing additionally have Leeos, or when you’ve got multiple house with one, the individual answering the decision gained’t know the place the emergency is. I additionally hope Leeo finishes the Android model of its app quickly, as a result of I don’t have an iPhone. In the present day, the app works solely with the iPhone 4S or later, with iOS 7 or later. it will also be managed by a fifth-generation iPod contact. I used my spouse’s iPhone 5 to judge the Leeo.

The way it works—and the way nicely it really works

Right here’s the way it works. Open a free Leeo account and set up the Leeo app in your smartphone. Plug the Leeo into {an electrical} outlet, ideally in a hallway the place your smoke or carbon-monoxide detector is positioned. Launch the app and it’ll use Bluetooth to pair your cellphone with the Leeo. The ultimate step is to offer the app along with your Wi-Fi router’s password, in order that the Leeo can be part of your property community.

Leeo Nightlight

Leeo sends this message by way of its app when it detects a smoke or carbon-monoxide sensor sounding off. 

The Leeo is provided with a microphone and sensors for temperature, humidity, and ambient mild. The microphone is tuned to acknowledge the particular frequencies and audio patterns that smoke and CO detectors generate after they sound an alarm (a Leeo spokesperson informed me there are UL-standard frequencies that every one smoke and CO detectors produce). And in my exams, the Leeo was capable of distinguish between the 2 alarms.

Leeo (the corporate) states the sensor’s vary at 75 toes, and it was capable of decide up my CO detector’s alarm from greater than 50 toes (in a bed room on the opposite aspect of the home). You may want multiple Leeo for those who personal a really massive or a multi-storied house. The app helps a number of Leeos and might decide which one is sending an alert.

The Leeo isn’t infallible

The Leeo additionally produced a few false alarms whereas I used to be testing it. The primary one occurred once I went again into my bed room to shut up the ladder I’d used to succeed in my ceiling-mounted smoke detector about 20 minutes earlier. Once I got here again into the room, the Leeo was flashing pink and my cellphone ringing. I answered the decision to listen to a recording of me speaking to my spouse, who was within the kitchen as I used to be within the bed room folding the ladder. The app registered the occasion as a carbon-monoxide alarm. I attempted to breed the circumstances that produce the false alarm, however it didn’t occur once more.

That piqued my curiosity, so I set about producing different noises to see what would occur. I picked up a crystal water glass and commenced slapping a chrome steel butcher knife towards it to supply a high-pitched ringing. Certain sufficient, one other false alarm—a CO detector alert as soon as once more. However once I dismissed the alert and tried once more, I as soon as once more was unable to breed the false alarm with the identical noise.

Leeo Smart Alert Nightlight

The Leeo Nightlight provides you rainbow of colours to select from. 

I additionally tried breaking a rack of pool balls (with the Leeo plugged in in the identical room); banging stainless-steel pots, ceramic plates, and silver flatware collectively; and taking part in loud music (together with Jimi Hendrix’s guitar-feedback-infused EXP, from Axis Daring As Love).

None of these sounds had any impact on the Leeo. However an hour or two later, my spouse referred to as to me from our grasp toilet the place she was drying her hair (I used to be in my house workplace on the opposite aspect of the home). The Leeo as soon as once more generated a false CO alarm. And as soon as once more, we have been unable to breed it.

Your property will seemingly be quiet whenever you’re not in it, except your pet knocks over a vase or a neighborhood child launches a baseball by your window (I didn’t try to supply both of these sounds), so there’s most likely little danger of a false alarm whilst you’re away. However for those who’re away and your partner or youngsters are house and create a noise that generates a false alarm, it could possibly be, nicely, alarming. Fortuitously, the Leeo’s capacity to ship you a recording of the sound that triggered it ought to put your thoughts relaxed if it does occur.

Once I queried Leeo about my false-alarm expertise by way of e-mail, I acquired this considerably sterile response: “The Leeo Sensible Alert Nightlight is programmed to acknowledge the frequencies and patterns related to smoke and CO alarms. It additionally regularly learns and updates as a tool to maintain households and their properties protected. The Leeo app, out there tomorrow [ed: Tuesday, October 21] on the App Retailer embodies all the newest updates and studying to this point.”

I’ll monitor the Leeo’s efficiency over the subsequent couple of weeks and can revisit my verdict if false alarms show to be a problem.

Superfluous options

The app shows the present temperature and humidity degree close to the Leeo. I suppose the temperature sensor may assist you to affirm {that a} fireplace has damaged out in your house, however one would hope that the hearth hasn’t grow to be that intense so shortly. And for those who see it registering a really low temperature, you would possibly fear about the opportunity of your pipes freezing or your pets coming to hurt. The humidity sensor is likely to be helpful as a warning that situations are ripe for mildew progress or that there’s a significant water leak (from a damaged pipe, as an illustration). These sensors will generate alerts if both degree goes to an excessive, however they’re redundant when you’ve got a wise thermostat.

Leeo Smart Alert Nightlight

The Leeo doesn’t require a grounded outlet, so it should work in older properties, too. 

I may say the identical for the nightlight, and it will be nice if Leeo got here out with a less expensive mannequin that dropped that function in addition to the temperature and humidity sensors.

In the event you do need a nightlight, the Leeo is a good one. It’s outfitted with an array of multi-colored LEDs that illuminate the Leeo’s collar and bounce mild off the wall behind it. You’ll be able to select amongst hundreds of thousands of colours by sliding your finger throughout the app, or you may decide from 10 predefined colours, together with white.

You may as well modify the brightness degree. In the event you activate the ambient mild sensor, the Leeo will routinely alter its brightness based mostly on the extent of sunshine within the room. The LEDs additionally flash pink to tell you of an emergency. They pulse white whereas speaking along with your cellphone, and so they fade from blue to white whereas connecting to your Wi-Fi community. A single LED could possibly be simply as helpful for these notification features.

A worthwhile funding

Leeo is an costly nightlight, however nobody will purchase it only for that. Regardless of the 2 false alarms, I’d belief its sensors to alert me to a fireplace or carbon monoxide emergency in my home. A easy textual content message would possibly induce panic, so the embedded recording is a superb function. And the cascading contact listing will make sure that somebody will hear about your emergency and take motion.

Aside from the false alarms, I’ve solely two different criticisms: First, Leeo doesn’t have any provision for being integrated into different smart-home methods. If both detector goes off, as an illustration, I need lights to come back on to light up my means out of the home. I may consider different guidelines, too, equivalent to recording video clips from third-party IP cameras, in order that I can see in addition to hear what’s taking place in my home. Together with help for IFTTT recipes can be one solution to accomplish that aim, and I hope Leeo considers that. [IFTTT support has since been added.]

Second, the Leeo can be a fair higher product if it had a battery backup. Smoke detectors run on batteries, and the AC-powered fashions have battery backup. Routers don’t, however for those who join yours and your Web gateway to an uninterruptible energy provide, your property gained’t lose its connection to the Web throughout a blackout. A battery-backed GSM module can be a fair higher answer, however then Leeo (the corporate) would most likely want a service contract. And that’s one thing it has prevented with this product.

Backside line: The Leeo Sensible Alert Nightlight is a great product for any house.

Replace: This story was initially printed on October 21, 2014. The story and its headline have been up to date after Leeo added IFTTT help and decreased the value of the Leeo Sensible Alert Nightlight to $49.99. It was up to date as soon as once more after the producer elevated the value to $99.99. 

Observe: Whenever you buy one thing after clicking hyperlinks in our articles, we could earn a small fee. Learn our affiliate hyperlink coverage for extra particulars.

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Newton Allan
Newton Allan is an expert of Apple and has started as a journalist for us (Trevino). He currently contributes for Trevino by writing about the latest happenings in the Apple INC.

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