5 Times Smart Home Devices Were Insanely Stupid
We’ve all heard the hype about smart homes being the next big thing, Maybe you’ve even invested in a smart thermostat or security camera. That’s fine.
But before you go crazy and turn your home into something out of The Jetsons, make sure you do your research. It turns out that sometimes, smart homes can actually be incredibly stupid.
Just watch these videos and remember, when your smart home goes crazy or gets hacked, you’re the one who’s going to be footing the cleanup bill.
Here are five times smart home devices were incredibly stupid.
1. Roomba Spreads Dog Poop
Michael Baturin went to work and left his Roomba on the “Dirt Detect” setting—and then something happened that he never could have predicted.
When his dog pooped in the hallway, the Roomba detected it and immediately went in to save the day.
Unfortunately, the robot wasn’t smart enough to realize that vacuuming up fresh dog poop isn’t such a great idea. If you’re a clean freak, please don’t watch the video, as you may be traumatized by what happened next.
2. Amazon Alexa Goes Wild
When these young parents purchased Amazon Echo, they thought it would be a good idea to film their young child requesting his favorite song from Alexa. What could possibly go wrong?
Surely this was their ticket to viral cuteness.
Turns out they did go viral, but not for the reason they expected. When Alexa had trouble understanding the young boy’s request, she thought he might be interested in porn instead, and suddenly let out a stream of x-rated channel descriptions.
The parents were understandably horrified, but the listen for the dad’s nervous laughter at the end of the video for a clue as to who might be the real culprit here.
3. Creepy Voice Heard Over Baby Monitor
Occasionally, we’re woken by spooky voices and things that go “bump” in the night. But when these parents heard a man’s voice coming from their baby’s bedroom, they were understandably horrified and went to investigate.
Upon entering their baby’s room, they heard a voice saying disturbing things to their child through the baby monitor. They immediately unplugged the device, and now think that it was hacked.
Unfortunately, it seems to be a trend, with many other families reporting that their baby monitors were also hacked.
4. Smart Bulbs Hacked by Fly-By Drone Attack
Smart bulbs are probably the most harmless smart devices you could invest in, right? Wrong.
Researchers at Weizmann Institute of Science were able to use a drone to hack into Philips Hue smart bulbs via a weakness in the wireless security protocol.
This doesn’t sound that bad in itself, but the researchers used the weakness to deliver a virus that quickly spread to other devices. In theory, attacks like these could potentially set off a chain reaction that cripples whole cities. Scary stuff.
5. Nest Thermostat Leaves Users Out in the Cold
When Nest ran a routine software update on their thermostats, they never expected it to become a PR disaster. It turns out that a glitch in the update caused the battery to die, switching the thermostat off—in the middle of Winter!
Unfortunately for Nest, one of the people affected just happened to be a technology writer at the New York Times who was woken in the middle of the night when his baby started crying due to the freezing temperatures.
While a temperature drop in your home is bad, at least it’s not dangerous like a smoke detector malfunctioning, you might say. Well, you should read this.