Hello, smart kitty

With so many automated home appliances available, turning your smart phone into a universal remote control can be really handy — and there have been plenty of companies making products to cater to that need. Most of these have designed their home hubs to be as small and inconspicuous as possible. Ratoc Systems' latest release, however, has turned its palm-sized RS-WFirex4 hub into a cute room accessory.

Released by SoftBank's SB C&S company, via Amazon Japan for ¥8,640, the Hello Kitty RS-WFirex4 is a limited-edition collaboration to celebrate the character goods company Sanrio's 45th anniversary. Admittedly, the collaboration simply involves emblazoning the palm-sized device with the iconic features of Hello Kitty, but it's a good excuse to mention the device itself, a relatively recent release from Ratoc Systems.