Phyn makes one of the least sexy smart gadgets in the smart home market. It’s also one of the most useful.
Available for pre-order today, the Phyn Smart Water Assistant is the most affordable and most convenient smart water monitoring system you can buy.
The company launched with Phyn Plus, a water monitoring unit that attaches to the water main and fires real-time water usage data to a smartphone app. Its primary features are spotting leaks before they become a problem, sending alerts when pipes begin to freeze and compiling water use reports on a home- and fixture-level. Phyn isn’t the only company to make a device like this — Flo and Buoy make similar gadgets — but its new product is the first to make it accessible.
Where the Plus, Buoy and Flo cost $500 and up on top of the cost of contracting a plumber for professional installation, the Smart Water Assistant debuts at a more manageable $299 and takes 5 to 10 minutes to install yourself. It sends leak alerts, freeze warnings and usage reports just like the previous model and it integrates with Alexa, Google Assistant and IFTTT.
The functional difference between the old and new comes down to a single feature: auto-shutoff. The first generation of smart water monitoring units were designed to attach to the water main, so they are able to both recognize a problem in water flow and shut down water flow as needed. The Smart Water Assistant is fixed under the sink and can only suggest fixes to potential issues.
The device works by measuring water pressure frequencies that run through your home, identifying specific fixtures (sinks, showers, washing machines, etc.) and watching for significant changes in pressure stemming from leaks or pipe freezes. It’s available for pre-order through Phyn’s site now, and will land in Best Buy stores in September.
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