Microsoft has unveiled the GLAS smart thermostat, a new smart home device that is powered by the Cortana digital assistant.
Details on the GLAS smart thermostat are currently sparse, but from what we know so far about the device, market leaders such as the Nest Learning Thermostat will soon face a legitimate challenger.
Microsoft, Johnson Controls Team Up For GLAS
Microsoft teamed up with Johnson Controls to create the GLAS smart thermostat, which was showed off in a YouTube video.
According to the video, the GLAS smart thermostat is capable of detecting the presence of people, can register air quality data for both the indoors and outdoors, and can send usage reports daily. Like all other smart thermostats, it can intelligently change the temperature of a room.
The GLAS smart thermostat is powered by the Windows 10 IoT Core OS, Cortana's voice control features, and the Microsoft Azure cloud computing platform. With Cortana embedded in the device, users will not have to talk to a smart speaker or a smartphone to change the temperature of their homes, as they will be able to do so directly through GLAS. Cortana voice controls give it an edge over the Nest Learning Thermostat, though there are other devices such as the Ecobee4 that offer the feature, powered by Amazon's Alexa.
Technology is not the only thing that the GLAS smart thermostat has going for it, though. The device, created for both homes and businesses, features a translucent touch screen and futuristic aesthetics, making it also look very good anywhere you place it.
There are several important details regarding the GLAS smart thermostat that are unknown, such as its price tag and its expected release date. However, just by looking at the device and watching its announcement video, Alphabet-owned Nest should already know that the Cortana-powered smart thermostat will give the Nest Learning Thermostat a run for its money.
Microsoft's Smart Home Plans
A report from a couple of months ago shed light on HomeHub, a new Windows 10 feature that will allow Microsoft to compete with devices such as the Amazon Echo and the Google Home.
According to internal concepts, Cortana is a big part of Microsoft's plans in the smart home space, and that can be seen in the integration of Cortana's voice controls in the GLAS smart thermostat. The device could be a sign of things to come for Microsoft, with Cortana to possibly also find its way into more types of smart home devices in the near future.