This Cyber Gnome Will Recycle Your Old Smartphone to Keep You Safe

By Matt Hill on at

Part cyber gnome, part Jason Voorhees, the Rico smart-home hub has a little more Halloween cachet than was probably intended. But having achieved its $100,000 Kickstarter target with 36 hours to spare and counting, the Indian startup behind it, MindHelix, won't be too fussed.

Rico, as well as looking rather swish in a Kid Robot figurine kind of way, can do lots of practical stuff of its own accord: sense motion, smoke, carbon monoxide, temperature and humidity.

But whack an old smartphone in its back and it uses the camera, mic and versatile connectivity options to turn the little fella into a fully fledged mobile security bot. Look, see how it works…

Working with Android 2.2+ and iOS 6.0+ handsets, Rico has a variety of Kickstarter options that start at $99 (£62) for a level that actually gets you the thing, but add the obligatory £20 to be shipped internationally next November.

But the big question, though is: dead ringer for Mario's Shy Guy, or what? [E27]