Home automation isn’t new, but it still feels new. As technology continues to advance, there are new products available all of the time. So of these products solve existing problems, others create new problems and their solutions at the same time. Either way, it’s easy to see that this tech category is not going away, and it’s time that big names are getting into home automation.
Here are the big tech names getting in on the game, and their latest projects:
Amazon has been experimenting with technology and electronics for years. Most have been successful enough I’ll overlook the Fire phone misstep), and that has fueled them forward in this space. They’ve created an entire force of tablets, all of which are ready to open the app that you need to control your home automation. Even better, then came up with their own home assistant that pairs seamlessly with their tablets. I’m referring, of course, to the Echo. Amazon was really the first to go to market with a home assistant that is this advanced. Since the release of the Echo, which is voice controlled, it has added home automation support. Amazon has also developed their own streaming devices, which connect to their tablets for an enhanced viewing experience. These streaming devices also now house a version of their home assistant; the future of Amazon in home automation tech might see the television as the hub.
Google made a big statement about their support for home automation when they acquired Nest. The tech giant is letting Nest run operation still, but I’m sure there are a fleet of new products, and new partnerships, in the works. I’d love to see wearable tech and home automation merge so that my thermostat can adjust based on my body temperature, whether I’m asleep or awake, and my heart rate. You can also bet that the Nest devices will soon be integrated with Google’s voice assistant. Google also developed its Brillo OS which allows cross-device communication and uses minimum power.
Apple is big on the home automation scene with HomeKit. This program works in the background of your iPhone, and connects all of your home automation apps. This allows them to communicate and work together. That means that when you unlock your door, your thermostat can register that you’re home and adjust the temperature. You can create a scene, like “away,” “at home,” or “movie night” – and have multiple automated devices trigger all at once. HomeKit also works with Siri, so you can use your voice to control your home.
Samsung has an Ace up its sleeve since it not only develops home automation tech, but it also develops the appliances that it controls, and the smartphones that house the apps. Their initiatives in home automation are expansive, centering around their home automation hub called Smart Home. This hub is attempting, as are most products, to be the end all be all Internet of Things that ties all your home devices together.