Got a God complex? Out of all the gadgets for the home, this may be the one that satisfies those cravings for control — after all, when you can control the weather, what else do you need?
OK, so maybe it just lets you control the water your yard gets. But still, that’s a lot of power with one swipe of your finger on a smartphone.
Technology has turned the average American home into a sometimes complex, interconnected web of Wi-Fi-controlled household gadgets. The “Internet of things” now includes dozens of household items such as refrigerators, fire detectors, air conditioners and more.
So why not add your sprinklers?
Yards can be tough to maintain, especially during hot, dry summer months. Sprinkler systems can help organize and automate watering schedules, but the Rachio Iro sprinkler lets a user swipe replenishing water on and off with the ease of a finger tap.
“Our smartphone app puts the power of your sprinkler system in the palm of your hand,” the Rachio team boasts on their site. Yep, the power pitch. They know who their audience is.
The Iro sprinkler controller tracks local weather data to allows for smarter irrigation scheduling, determining your lawn and garden water requirements, and helps to adjust for seasonal needs. The app also connects via Wi-Fi to an accompanying app for more granular control and the setting of precise parameters (such as the type of soil, the shade/sun cover of each zone, local watering restrictions, etc.) for the system, according to Treehugger.
The basic Iro smart sprinkler controller can handle up to eight different zones, which will meet the need for most small to medium sized yards. But if you have a yard that requires a riding lawnmower, the company also offers a 16-zone option; for those with bigger landscapes or perhaps want to be able to optimize their watering by setting up smaller or more precise irrigation zones.
The Iro is available in some stores; the basic model starts just under $250, and the 16-zone upgrade is $50 extra. Pre-orders for their system were backed up until this month, but now customers can place new orders through the company’s website.
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