Fingerbot Aims to Upgrade Traditional Home Appliances to Smart Home Gadgets
Built with a metal pusher for improved durability, this switch-poking bot brings disconnected devices to the Internet of Things (IoT).
Smart home startup OUVOPO has launched a crowdfunding campaign to bring a switch-flicking “Fingerbot” and Bluetooth hub to life — aiming to bring older disconnected devices to the Internet of Things (IoT) without the cost of replacement.
( Fingerbot Aims to Upgrade )”OUVOPO [wants] to help you smartly control buttons and switches, and eventually give you smart control over your appliances,” claims Lyndsay Erin Baker of the company’s vision. “Sometimes the idea of transforming your home into one that is “smart” can be daunting. With OUVOPO, you can transform all your existing home appliances and make them interactive, fun, and more easily intelligizing your home.”
The heart of the platform’s promise: a compact robot designed to attach to existing manual control panels and flick switches on demand, pushing them using a small linear actuator. Each bot links to Tuya’s Smart Life or Tuya Smart smartphone apps via Bluetooth for in-home control, while an optional Bluetooth hub connects the devices to the network for true remote control and voice assistant integration with Alexa, Google, and Siri.
“[The device] works well with just about any rocker switch and button of any appliance,” Baker claims. “Such as coffee machines, washing machines, air conditioners, panel switches, etc. Select press/switch/program mode in the app and automatically trigger your button at anytime you want.”
Those two operation modes — plus the machine’s programming mode — provide additional flexibility: in “press” mode the device interacts with buttons, offering a single press for on and off; in “switch” mode, the robot attaches to a rocker switch and pushes against the frame to allow it to move the switch between on and off on-demand.
The company is currently funding the project on Kickstarter, with physical rewards starting at $35 for “Super Early Bird” backers of the Fingerbot or $45 for a bundle with one Fingerbot and one Bluetooth hub. All physical rewards are expected to ship in November 2022.