Samsung snaps up SmartThings in IoT play

The landgrab for Internet of Things (IoT) assets continues with Samsung buying up a ready made IoT community and ecosystem in the form of SmartThings.

Californian firm SmartThings, which emerged from a successful KickStarter project, brings together an ecosystem of home automation device suppliers and develops the system management software and smartphone application that sits across the top of them all. All of the usual suspects from home safety to power management and temperature control are addressed. The company also curates a developer community which writes various software using the firm’s open API.

SmartThings said it believes there is an enormous opportunity to leverage Samsung’s global scale giving better support for all of the leading smartphone vendors, devices, and applications and expand its base of developers.

But the company was very clear to say that it would operate as an independent company within Samsung’s Open Innovation Center group, keeping its team intact and running as it always has.

This might have been in anticipation of the SmartThing’s devloper community’s reaction to the acquisition news. CEO Alex Hawkinson has been firefighting on the company blog over the last few days, with a good number of customers and developers protesting about the news. While not averse to the acquisition it seems there is a bit of backlash over the emergence of Samsung as the buyer.

Read the responses on the company blog.


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