Samsung Buys Home Automation Company
Company founder and CEO Alex Hawkinson claims that Samsung will continue to offer a “totally open smart-home platform.” “Samsung fully supports this vision,” said Hawkinson whose Company was founded in 2012.
“From the beginning, our goal has been to make a platform every human being could use-and to make every home a smart home,” said Hawkinson.
“This will help us reach a massive scale. We saw an opportunity to bring SmartThing’s vision to hundreds of millions of customers via Samsung.”
According to the two companies, SmartThings will operate as an independent company despite the opoerations of the Company being integrated into Samsung’s Open Innovation Centre in the USA.
The Open Innovation Center acts as an investing arm and startup accelerator for U.S. companies that Samsung is interested in.
“While the company has been acquired by Samsung, being in the Open Innovation Center, the company will be kept at arms length away from Samsung,” said Samsung executive vice president David Eun.
“We want to people to understand how important it is that they will stay independent. SmartThings will continue to work with its developer community and business partners. In the meantime, we’ll be exploring ways to partner with them.”
Just what exactly those partnerships between SmartThings and Samsung will look like has yet to be determined. The Company already has a number of connected appliances on sale in Australia. The aquisition will allow Samsung to sync them up with the thousands of gadgets claim analysts.
SmartThings’ sole piece of hardware, its hub that talks to all of the smart gadgets in one central place-could also come pre-installed in any one of Samsung’s electronics, such as its TV.
“Samsung is the biggest electronics company in the world, imagine what we could do to create rich experiences for the consumer,” said Hawkinson. “A big part of this could be on distribution. The more consumers we have, the more developers get excited.”
Central to the SmartThings platform is its developer community who create the “smart apps” that allow these various devices to sync up and talk to each other.
Apple is also thinking along the lines of how to make its gadgets more embedded into its customers lives. It recently announced HomeKit, which allows developers to safely sync up connected gadgets up to iOS. And Google has its own plans with its $3.2 billion acquisition of Nest at the start of this year.
David Eun insists that this acquisition doesn’t have anything to do with moves its competitor Apple is doing. “Samsung has been thinking about this space for a long time. Now SmartThings can really put the jet fuel into our efforts.”