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Skydog Kickstarter Passes Goal, Edges Closer to Retail

By - Source: PowerCloud Systems | B 7 comments

The Skydog Kickstarter project has surpassed its goal.

Weeks ago, we reported on Skydog, a Kickstarter project aimed to disrupt the home networking market by offering a level of visibility and management not seen on competing networking products. The company behind Skydog, PowerCloud Systems, has reached its goal of $75,000 USD, meaning that actual hardware is on track to arrive in the hands of financial backers in May 2013.

As of this article, the Skydog Kickstarter project has pulled in 783 backers pledging $81,723 USD, and there's still 14 days to go in the campaign. "Your enthusiastic support has taken us past our funding goal and we are thrilled to be able to bring Skydog to your homes!" the company said on Friday. "Please stay tuned. We’ve had numerous requests for stretch goals and, now that we know Skydog is funded, we're making plans."

As previously reported, the system comprises of a Wireless N dual-band router and an HTML5-based application that can be accessed from anywhere on any device. It promises a high level of visibility and control of the user's home network, showing who is actually online, which devices are being used, what websites are being accessed and how much bandwidth is being used.

For example, Skydog allows the user to establish a specific "Zone", or rather a set of Wi-Fi and wired connections, via the Bandwidth Manager. Some Zones can have a higher priority and more bandwidth over the other Zones at a specific time. That means the user can switch the home network QoS priority so that the WatchMovie mode is selected to give streaming video higher traffic in the Family or Entertainment Zone over a large file download that is happening on the Work Zone.

"Alternatively, you can reserve a Zone for any device that requires highest priority over others," the company said. "Depending on time of day and what users care to do, an application running on one device, like a Skype call for work on Dad's PC or the video stream from the Smart TV, may require the higher priority. Any one of these devices can connect to this Highest Priority Zone to get the best performance at that time."

Although Skydog can distinguish users based on the registered device, what it currently can't do is distinguish between different users on a single device. This will actually be addressed by enabling content filtering levels at the Zone.

"So, when a child uses a computer and can access the Child Zone, he/she will have content, security and performance policies that are different from when a parent uses the same computer to connect to the Parent Zone," the company said. "The key here will be that the passphrase for the wireless network (SSID) is not entered and saved in that computer, and a parent will need to keep that passphrase for the Parent Zone a secret."

As stated weeks ago, PowerCloud Systems is looking to shake up the home networking arena, and Skydog will likely do just that with its intelligent features and its intelligent approach to remote network management. It will be interesting to see what the final product will offer next month.

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  • 0 Hide
    greatsaltedone , May 1, 2013 8:46 AM
    It's about time someone attempted to bring routing into the 21st century. Let's all hope that it does not come at the expense of the raw data and functions we're used to.
  • -1 Hide
    jack1982 , May 1, 2013 9:16 AM
    Somebody should really make a router that's designed for a regular person to install and use and not assume that only IT professionals do that sort of thing.
  • 1 Hide
    teh_chem , May 1, 2013 12:01 PM
    A neat idea. But given that so many people with home wifi networks either can't or don't change it from an open to a secured access point, I can't see a whole lot of people outside of the enthusiast market going for this. And those that would be interested in a product like this can generally already accomplish what is described, even through the crappy firmwares on most routers much less flashing an alternative firmware to enable more options.
    Then again, more power to these guys if they make it work.
  • 2 Hide
    dalethepcman , May 1, 2013 4:16 PM
    Somebody should really make a router that's designed for a regular person to install and use and not assume that only IT professionals do that sort of thing.

    Because IT professionals love acronyms, I believe RTFM has correctly described the problem and solution with all simple electronic devices since the birth of the VCR, including a wifi router.

    Just like a VCR as long as you connect the cables correctly, the device will work out of the box, you should not expect to know how to setup a recording schedule without RTFM. Just like you should not expect to know how to setup mac address filtering, security, whitelisting, ip connection logging, security, etc. etc. etc... without RTFM.

    Last I checked knowing how to read wasn't some exclusive club that only IT pro's were allowed in.

    I'm with Teh_chem on this one. The only people that will use this are the 20 somethings that don't want to help their parents / grand parents setup proper wifi.
  • 0 Hide
    tiret , May 1, 2013 10:24 PM
    maybe off topic but could someone recommend a router that has the "best" range
  • 0 Hide
    dalethepcman , May 2, 2013 1:42 PM
    maybe off topic but could someone recommend a router that has the "best" range

    Might want to ask a question on the forums instead of in the news comments :) 
    Include your price range and distance requirements. If you get a thread going PM me and ill help.
  • 0 Hide
    urbanman2004 , May 14, 2013 10:55 AM
    This is a nice idea, but I’m already accomplished in knowing how to set up the average router so if were to get this it won’t make my productivity any more efficient