The Notion is among the recent home security systems that uses multiple types of sensors to monitor threats like water damage or burglary. The central hub connects to Wi-Fi and draws information from separate units spread throughout the house. It will be available in July 2015.
A small central hub, about the size of a bar of soap, connects to your home Wi-Fi network and is controlled with an app. Then, the slightly smaller sensors can be distributed throughout the house or apartment.
The varied capabilities of each small sensor are what make Notion unusual. A single pod, about the size of a stereo’s volume knob, can measure a change in room temperature, the acceleration of an opening door, or the illumination from a lightbulb left on. Sensors have a Piezoelectric transducer, which measures frequency—Notion's example is that you can stick it to a propane tank and know how much volume it has left.
Notion’s other selling point is integration with existing analog home devices. If a smoke alarm goes off, it can read the sound and alert you, or if a room gets cold, you can be notified and tell your Nest thermostat to turn up the temperature. It has also been accepted into Apple’s HomeKit system.
The main hub has integrated battery and cellular backup as well, so if you monitor a vacation home and want to keep the Wi-Fi off, it can send text alerts when something goes awry. Each sensor’s batteries are rated to last about two years.
With a recently fulfilled crowd-funding campaign, the Notion system will be made, but is not shipping until July 2015. It might be worth waiting as the connected home evolves. But, given this brand’s impressive origins—the company is a product of Techstars, an startup accelerator whose graduates have an high rate of success—we expect it to be among the best options available.