However, the smart home, for the most part, remained messy. Many smart home products have not worked well with other technologies. For example, some locks only work with Apple mobile phones and not with Android; Some thermostats were controlled by speaking to the Google Assistant, not Siri.
Incompatibilities create long-term problems. The Apple compatible lock is not useful for family members or future renters who prefer Android. It will also be relevant one day if our household appliances can communicate, such as telling the washer dryer that this heavy load of clothes is now ready to dry.
This year, the biggest tech competitors — Apple, Samsung, Google and Amazon — are doing well to make the smart home more practical. They plan to launch and upgrade their home technology to work with Matter, a new standard that allows smart home devices to communicate, regardless of which virtual assistant or cell phone brand they own. More than 100 smart home products are expected to comply with this standard.
“We all speak a common language built on proven technologies,” said Samantha Osborne, vice president of marketing for SmartThings, a Samsung-owned home automation company.
This means that later this year, when purchasing a product like an automated door lock, look for a label that indicates the device is compatible. So in the future, your smart alarm clock will be able to tell your smart lights to turn on when you wake up.
3. Connected health
Fitness devices like the Apple Watch and Fitbit, which help us track our movements and heart rate, continue to become more popular. That’s why this year tech companies are testing small, wearable devices that collect more accurate data about our health.
Oura, a health technology company, recently introduced a new model of the Oura Ring, a ring combined with sensors that track metrics such as body temperature to accurately predict menstrual cycles. Last week at CES, a tech trade fair in Las Vegas, Movano, another health startup, revealed a similar ring that collects data on heart rate, temperature and other metrics to inform the user of potential chronic illnesses.
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