Samsung has acquired home automation specialist SmartThings for what’s thought to be around $200 million (£150 million). SmartThings will now operate as a separate business within Samsung’s Open Innovation Center group.
By downloading a smartphone app and installing SmartThings products, consumers are able to control lights, locks, electronics and other appliances by using their phone as a ‘remote control’ - not just inside the home but anywhere with online connectivity.
In a blog post, co-founder and CEO Alex Hawkinson said “We believe that there is an enormous opportunity to leverage Samsung’s global scale to help us realize our long-term vision. While we will remain operationally independent, joining forces with Samsung will enable us to support all of the leading smartphone vendors, devices, and applications; expand our base of developers and enhance the tools and programs that they rely on; and help many more people around the world easily control and monitor their homes using SmartThings.”
Google and Apple have both recently made moves into home automation and the Internet of Things: earlier this year Google acquired Nest, while Apple has introduced its HomeKit development framework for iOS 8.