Amazon's 'Certified for Humans' program makes smart homes more accessible to tech novices
Using the power of AlexaBy Cohen Coberly
Right now, just about every appliance or device in your home has a "smart" variant that you can purchase; allowing you to do things like adjust your oven temperature from another room, or ask your fridge for cookie baking instructions.
Unfortunately, as smart devices become more and more ubiquitous in the modern home, the complexity of managing them goes up as well. Many a device requires its own dedicated "hub" or app to function properly, and using the gadgets is not always a straightforward proposition; especially for those who aren't tech enthusiasts. Even setting up a single Echo device can involve some frustrating troubleshooting steps for the uninitiated.
That's where Amazon's newest program, "Certified for Humans" (CFH), comes in. The CFH program aims to make setting up your smart home a "struggle-free, tinker-free, and stress-free" process.
The CFH program aims to make setting up your smart home a "struggle-free, tinker-free, and stress-free" process.
The program is simple: companies who meet a strict list of requirements can have their devices slapped with the CFH tag, which assures prospective buyers that their Alexa-compatible gadgets won't require much time or effort to install. For now, Amazon hasn't discussed the nitty-gritty details of how this program will work, but a promo video shows real "non-experts" simply plugging in a CFH device (including Philips Hue bulbs and a smart tea kettle) and saying "Alexa, discover devices."
Shortly after, they're able to give commands to said devices right away. It's unclear whether or not the real end user of a CFH device will have such an easy time, though. Hue bulbs, in particular, will probably require some extra setup – you'll still need to name the bulbs in the Alexa app or by voice.
Still, for other, simpler devices (like the previously-mentioned tea kettle) this initiative cold be quite a boon for those who aren't tech-savvy – as long as the CFH program's simplicity hasn't been overstated, of course.
At any rate, if CFH devices sound like your cup of tea, you can view a seemingly-full list of them right here. The list includes smart plugs, a smart oven, Philips Hue bulbs, and a smart coffee maker, but we can likely expect it to expand in the coming months and years.
Clarification: A previous version of this article implied that you'd need to use the Philips Hue app to name Philips' bulbs. In truth, CFH bulbs allow you to accomplish this task by using the Alexa app, or the Alexa voice assistant. We've updated this piece's wording to clarify this information.