Lowe's updated connected home system is built for your phone

While most connected home devices on the market were introduced as mobile-first solutions, the Lowe's Iris system on the other hand, required new users to set it up via a browser. After set up -- while the mobile app was able to share status information and access features like turning items on and off -- it was still a desktop-heavy setup. Today the hardware store-turned developer is fixing that with a new platform built from the ground up with a mobile-first strategy and updated devices.

"We're going to try to focus on continuously improving," Mick Koster GM of Iris Home Systems told Engadget. That means up updating the app every few weeks and adding more third-party devices to the Works with Iris program. The updated app now handles all the on boarding functions and settings for devices. The company is also lowering the bar for entry by cutting the price of its hub.

The new hub is $59.99, a substantial price cut from the $99.99 hub. It works with ZigBee, Z-Wave, WiFi and AllJoyn. It's joined by all new slimmer keypads, smart sensors, smart plugs and others. They can be purchased separately or part of the security or home automation packs for $99 and $129 respectively.

Iris still has a $9.99 a month subscription service that adds a two week history, custom groups of devices and video recording based on alarms and events. But the free service still does all the important things you need from connected-home in a box system.