Skip to main content

Gadgets of the week: Philips hue dimmer, SmartThings Hub V2 and more!

We're putting together another week's worth of the best in connected accessories, including wearables, smart home gadgets, Bluetooth speakers, and whatever else talks to your Android phone or tablet. Philips has a simple but handy dimmer switch for their connected lightbulbs, and SmartThings is updating their connected home hub with additional offline measures. Find more of the week's coolest new Android-friendly doohickeys inside!

Read: The week's best Android gadgets

Scosche BoomBottle+

Sosche has upgraded their extra tough portable Bluetooth speaker. It's as waterproof as the previous generation, but now there are protected USB ports to charge your phone or tablet while out on the trail. A dedicated switch optimizes audio playback for outdoors or indoors, and dedicated hardware controls help you manage the music either way. A 1/4-inch mount lets you put the BoomBottle+ anywhere, though, as the name suggests, it fits just fine in any cupholder, including the one on your bike frame.

SmartThings Hub V2

Samsung's SmartThings hub is getting an upgrade soon to live a little better without the internet. A new backup battery ensures a blip in your hub's power supply. The new set-up also allows for the hub to interact directly with other SmartThings sensors in the house when the internet cuts out. The cloud's great and all, but it ain't perfect. That said, recent software updates have allowed SmartThings to play nice with Amazon Echo, if you happen to own of those. There are apparently more features yet to be revealed, but you can order one now for shipping in September.

Philips hue dimmer

Those with Philips hue connected light bulbs may not want to always dive into the app to control their lights. A new dimmer switch lets you easily control your lights from anywhere in the house. There's a wall mount too, if you want to put it where you'd normally have a light switch at home. The kit comes with one of the white hue bulbs, which can connect directly to the dimmer switch without needing an existing hub. Up to 10 bulbs can be connected to the same dimmer to boot.


$100 Buy

The Coin payment card which ambitiously aims to amalgamate all of your credit, debit, and membership cards into one is adding NFC. You manage your various cards and information through the mobile app and add new cards with the included swipe reader. With the new Coin card, you'll be able to tap and go as you would with any of your individual cards or mobile payment options when making a purchase. Additionally, the new version will let you add nicknames to clearly identify your various cards. Coin is still working through orders of the original card, so don't expect yours to be shipping until early next year.

Coin 2.0

Verizon hum

Verizon is offering an interesting new service for making dumb cars a little more smart. With the hum dongle plugged into your car's onboard diagnostic port, paired with a Bluetooth speaker and an Android app, drivers can keep tabs on the status of their vehicle, remotely locate it (handy for finding where you parked), and call in roadside assistance.

A wealth of mobile notification options help you stay fully informed and keep your car in tip-top shape. If you sign up for a two-year subscription, they'll throw the hum hardware in for free.

Your favorite new Android gadgets?

Those are the best new releases we've been able to dig up. Leave a comment below with your finds!

Simon has been covering mobile since before the first iPhone came out. After producing news articles, podcasts, review videos, and everything in between, he's now helping industry partners get the word about their latest products. Get in touch with him at
  • I'm looking forward to the smarthings hub. My Vera Lite is really getting on my nerves.
  • Sad to see Big Red's "Hub" on here. For just Torque (an android app) and a $20 OBD from Amazon you have the same thing without a subscription. If only there was a website dedicated to Android that would point this out... Posted via the Android Central App
  • Agree. I've had Torque and an ebay OBD-II BT reader for years. Worth it's weight in gold when you have a slightly older vehicle that doesn't have all kinds of crazy computer stuff to tell you what's wrong. It's ridiculous (but not surprising) that Verizon is going to weasel $15/mo away from unsuspecting car owners.
  • I gather the remote location tracking is the big thing. Yeah, you can get diagnostics with cheaper solutions, but you need an independent data connection in order to find your car with your phone.
  • Lol yeah true for the price of one month of their service you can buy your own OBD reader off amazon or ebay and they have bluetooth and wireless ones... for another months you could buy the full Torque I think too!