Samsung has announced a launch of a new software update that will allow consumers to convert their older Galaxy smartphones to various types of Internet of Things (IoT) devices under the company's initiative called Galaxy 'Upcycling at Home', an initiative that gives new life to older Galaxy smartphones by converting them into a variety of IoT (Internet of Things) devices through a simple software update.

The feature will be available for all Galaxy S, Note and Z smartphones that were released from 2018 onwards and run Android 9 and above. More devices will be supported under the programme in the future.

This feature is part of Samsung Electronics' expansion of its Galaxy Upcycling program with Galaxy Upcycling at Home, which provides enhanced sound and light-control features, by repurposing built-in sensors. Users can transform their old devices through SmartThings Labs, a feature within the SmartThings app. 

The devices can be turned into smart home devices such as a childcare monitor, a pet care solution, or a light sensor, the report said.

Samsung has implemented the beta service for Galaxy Upcycling at Home in the US, the UK and Korea1 today. With Galaxy Upcycling at Home, users can easily turn their old Galaxy devices2 into smart home devices like a childcare monitor, a pet care solution and other tools that meet individual lifestyle needs.

Make Any Home a Smart Home

  • Using an improved artificial intelligence (AI) solution, Galaxy devices can more accurately distinguish sounds in everyday surroundings, and users can choose to save certain sound recordings. For example, if the device detects sounds such as a baby crying, dog barking, cat meowing, or a knock, it will send an alert directly to the user’s smartphone and the user can listen to the recorded sound.

  • Devices can also be used as a light sensor to measure the brightness level of the room. Users can easily set the device to automatically turn on the lights or the TV through SmartThings if the room becomes darker than the preset standard of light.

For a device to continuously detect sound and light, it needs to be actively operating for long periods of time. For this reason, Samsung equipped the Galaxy Upcycling at Home upgrade with battery optimization solutions to minimize battery usage. Devices will also be able to connect effortlessly to SmartThings, allowing them to interact with countless other IoT devices in the SmartThings ecosystem.

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