Ninja Sphere promises to turn your house into a smart home for $329

Back in January, a smart home device called Ninja Sphere made over $650,000 on Kickstarter. Now, its creators (Ninjablocks) has started accepting its first pre-orders outside the crowdfunding website for $329 per unit. But, what can a Ninja Sphere do in the first place? Well, this gesture-controlled device can monitor temperature, lighting and even energy usage, but that's just one of the things it's capable of. Ninjablocks touts it as a veritable multi-tasker that sends alerts if you've left appliances running when you go out and let you turn them off using your phone. With the proper IFTT recipes in place, it also lets you switch on the heater or AC before you get home, or switch on the lights at a set time using a phone or even a smartwatch.

Since the Sphere can connect to Bluetooth Low Energy devices, it can locate pets and items tagged with those small BLE locators like Gecko. It can even tell you if one of the things you've tagged has been moved and gives you the option to activate cameras in the room, if available. The device can also serve as a hub for Philips Hue, Belkin WeMo, and Dropcam, among other high-tech systems for the home. Based on the device's original Kickstarter page, these are but some of the things the Sphere can do, as it comes equipped with ZigBee radio for more advanced home automation and a USB port where you can plug in Arduino-based projects, cameras, speakers and more sensors. And, since the device is open source, tech-savvy users can upgrade it as they please. You can get a unit as early as October if you choose to pre-order this round, but if you're unsure and want to know more, check out Engadget Spanish's Sphere write-up.