Apple’s coming move follows Google’s $3.2bn acquisition in January of Nest Labs, makers of internet-connected thermostats and smoke alarms, and Samsung’s recent debut of its Smart Home range of refrigerators, washing machines and TVs that can be controlled from its smartphones and watches.
Apple’s integrated system will make it easier to set up and control new “smart home” devices. For example, a home’s lights might automatically come on when the owner enters the house, using their iPhone to wirelessly signal their arrival. Such a system was outlined in an Apple patent filing, published in November last year.
Sources: The Financial Times. Business Insider. CNET