With more than 140,000 smart devices compatible with Alexa, Amazon’s smart home of the future is no longer the future. It’s here.
- Online retailer Amazon has been meticulously building a line of smart-home devices compatible with voice assistant Alexa to create a futuristic smart home.
- Apple and Google also offer tools the allow homeowners to automat routine behaviors in the home.
- Amazon data shows that nearly 300 million devices are connected to Alexa and the device is activated millions of times a week.
- The devices offer automation that allows users to customize a home that adapts to their schedule.
With smart-home devices, users can program lights and other electronics to turn on and off at certain times. Lights can be timed to gradually turn on, gently waking users in time for the morning routine.
Robotic vacuums like iRobot’s roomba start up when users leave the house for work, doing the daily cleaning while homeowners are away. Voice controls allow users to activate televisions and turn lights on and off.
The Amazon smart plug turns nearly any electronic device into a voice controlled smart device.
Smart devices can even save users money while helping the environment. When homeowners are away from the day, Amazon devices can adjust climate control within the house so the heat or air conditioning isn’t running when no one is home.
Earlier this week, Amazon announced additions to the smart home collection. Halo Rise tracks a user’s sleep and makes adjustments to the home to help users sleep more soundly. Upgrades to Fire TV give users greater control over their devices.
Amazon also introduced Astro the home robot, a device that allows homeowners to more closely monitor what’s happening inside the house when they are away.
As smart home technology becomes more accessible to everyday users, more homeowners are expecting these upgrades in their homes.
Amazon isn’t the only company building a line of smart home devices. Using voice assistant Siri, Apple has created a line of products allowing users to control lights and other electronic devices. Apple TV is compatible with voice control and some non-Apple smart devices can be compatible with Siri.
While Apple offers many similar products to Amazon, the Home app gives users access to their smart devices at the touch of a button.
Google offers a variety of smart devices, compatible with a voice assistant accessed with a simple “Hey, Google.” Like Amazon and Apple, Google offers smart plugs and home control options.
Backing up a bit
Amazon has been making strides in the smart home market, but one of their recent acquisitions may have hit a snag.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is investigating Amazon’s $1.7 billion deal to acquire iRobot, the latest in growing scrutiny of the company’s expanding reach.
Both iRobot and Amazon have received FTC requests for further information related to the recent merger.
This is the second instance of an FTC review of an Amazon deal this month. The FTC is reviewing Amazon’s attempt to buy One Medical, a primary health care company.
Amazon and iRobot have said that they will cooperate fully with the investigation, though the FTC review will postpone the completion of Amazon and iRobot’s deal.