Without a doubt, the next big frontier for tech companies to focus on is home automation. With wearables still in question about their value and longevity, and the mobile market heavily saturated, new arenas to compete in must be sought out. Naturally, the players you’d expect to be there first – Apple, Google, and Samsung – are already making moves and staking their place.
Last month, Samsung was in discussions to acquire the company SmartThings, which focuses on home automation and control. SmartThings was born as a startup through its Kickstarter campaign, generating over a million dollars of backer funding just two years ago. When this purchase deal finalizes, it will mark one of the largest ever startup acquisitions in the United States. $200 million is a pretty penny.
Samsung is likely interested in the open platform that SmartThings has created. The company will be be able to operate independently, although the entire office will have to relocate from Washington D.C. to California. With over 5,000 developers building devices to connect to the platform, this could give Samsung an edge in creating a common standard for home devices.
Many popular wireless-equipped devices available now include: thermostats, home monitoring/security cameras, alarms, lights, and some appliances. We can expect to see more alliances and rivalries as companies align with or partner up together.