Beta to turn Samsung phones into sound or light sensor comes out

Samsung has released the first beta of an application to turn Galaxy smartphones into sound or light sensors. The beta only works in a few countries and it also only supports newer phones for now.

The application is called Galaxy Upcycling at Home and the beta will be released in the United States, the United Kingdom and Samsung’s home country South Korea, Samsung said. There are two applications so far in the Labs section of SmartThings, where the features can be found.

Among other things, the beta can use the phone as a sound sensor and it is possible to distinguish baby crying from the sound of pets. That makes the phone suitable as a baby monitor. If the software recognizes a sound, the recording goes to a user’s current smartphone.

In addition, it is possible to use the app so that a telephone becomes a light sensor. Via Samsung’s own SmartThings platform, it is possible, for example, to automatically turn on lights when the phone detects that it is getting darker than a preset value.

In addition, the app includes ways to reduce the phone’s battery consumption when used as an IoT device, so that the phone will last longer. The beta does not yet work on old phones: the oldest is the Galaxy S9 from 2018. Moreover, it only works on expensive models for the time being: S, Note and Z phones. Samsung announced the Upcycling program in January. The intention is that phones that users no longer use as such, will receive the functionality to function as IoT devices via a latest update. It is not yet clear which phones will be compatible and when those updates will come.