21 Dec 2015

It is quite the trend these days to connect physical objects that are usually not connected at all to the Internet. Beside your smart tv, your fridge, your air conditioner can be connected to the Internet.



Just before Ambi Climate reaches Singapore shores, I had the chance to try it out for myself. The palm-sized gadget sits between the user and the air conditioner. Telling the air conditioner what to do to make you comfortable. All you need is an Internet connection, your smartphone or tablet (be it Android or iOS), and a supported air conditioner. Yes, you can control your air conditioner even when you are not in your room, or even, set it to cool your room before you are back home (just do not forget to leave your windows or doors opened, hehe).

Built by Ambi Labs, the startup which won multiple awards such as the first place among 300 startups at the RISE Conference pitch competition in Hong Kong, People’s Choice Award at Echelon last year. In October, Ambi Climate beat 160 other contenders at Singtel’s Accelerator Challenge!


I love unboxing the Ambi Climate. The gadget comes carefully packed in a simple box. Pick the adapter that suits your electrical outlet.


Ease of Set Up


Setting it up is a simple affair, simply plug in your Ambi Climate to the power point, download the Ambi Climate app from the respective mobile app stores. Connect your mobile device to Ambi Climate's temporary hotspot via WiFi and follow the on-screen guide to set up your Ambi Climate on your network. The toughest part is done. Easy isn't it? The indicator lights may seem bright here, but it will dim down once everything is done.


Holistic AC comfort

For a first-timer, it takes just a little while for me to familiarise myself with the controls. From the simple packaging, to the simple yet feature packed control screen.


On the left (tap on the menu icon) all the Ambi Climate gadgets connected to the account are listed so you can switch between rooms. On the right, tap on the controls icon and you have a little timer and some settings. Did I mentioned that the default background chosen is so cute and you can choose your own background in the app? The company really takes personalisation to the maximum!

More than Just Temperature Control
 

According to the manufacturer, there are six sensors that factor in environmental influences such as outside temperature, sunlight and humidity. Using these sensors and the feedback the user gives on the app, the Ambi Climate tailors the comfort based on all these inputs. This helps to save energy costs by reducing unnecessary cooling.

Multi-mode



Ambi Climate has a number of modes - Comfort, Temperature, Away, Manual. Each provides a different level of control over your air conditioner.

The manual mode simply gives you a replacement remote and gives you all the control over the speed, temperature, louver, and cooling mode of your air conditioner.

Away, cools your room to the desired setting, be it heating, cooling or humidity control. Just simply leave it in this mode if you are away from your room and the room stays comfortable when you return. If you have pets in the room, it helps to keep them cool in the warm weather of Singapore!

Temperature mode cools it down to your desired temperature. Just push the circle up or down to cool.

As for the comfort mode, your feedback matters, at least to Ambi Climate. Just hit hot, too warm, too cold, freezing or comfortable as and when you feel like it. Coupled with the AI, Ambi Climate instructs your air conditioner how to cool to keep you really comfortable. Really interesting!

My thoughts

After using it for more than half a month now, I find it pretty useful especially when I am in the room working on my laptop or while sleeping. I like putting it in the comfort mode, so I can either leave it to the gadget to decide how cool my room should be. The Ambi Climate also respond when I tap on my original air conditioner remote, taking note what I have told the air conditioner to do.

The sensors, my input, the air conditioner operating modes are all reflected in a graph (in the history) to let me have a feel of my usage. Which I think is a good feature. It does helps me to keep in check how much unnecessary cooling and my usual temperature setting to keep me comfortably cooled.

If you are interested to get your hands on one, the Ambi Climate is now available at the Challenger Christmas event in ION Orchard, Basement Atrium until January 3rd. It will also be available at selected retail partners. You can also check out their website athttp://www.ambiclimate.com/ to find out more!

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