When we think of smart home tech we think of the Apple’s, the Amazon’s, the Phillips’ of the world. When we say to you flat packed furniture the company that springs to mind is IKEA. IKEA smart home invasion is coming your way in 2019.
However, that soon may change in 2019, with IKEA set to become a major player in the smart home market. Wired are reporting that by playing to it’s strengths, not only in brick and mortar stores. One can assume that their displays is the perfect opportunity to show off how the tech works, before a customer buys it. But, furthermore by building inline sales and partnerships with the big boys in Sonos, Apple and Xiaomi.
Weapons in their arsenal
IKEA already have smart home kit in their Arsenal, with smart home light bulbs (TRÅDFRI) and smart electrical outlets (KADRILJ and FYRTUR) both systems are low cost and near invisible tech. They both work manually as you’d expect and automated controls. Not only that, but they also work within the main ecosystems of the three big players within this market. The Google Assistant, Amazon’s Alexa and Apple’s HomeKit. If IKEA are smart enough they could put smart home tech into all aspects of the home, be that kitchen gadgets, home entertainment or garden accessories.
As you would expect IKEA are implementing the same DIY aspect of their furniture into their smart home tech.
“It is as simple to install KADRILJ and FYRTUR as all our other blinds….You can even change from an old HOPPVALS or SKOGSKLÖVER to this one, using the same bracket. This means that the customers can easily install the smart blinds themselves, a unique IKEA property.” Lena Engman, business leader home textiles at IKEA
Wired are reporting that Björn Block, business leader of IKEA Home Smart confirms that we will see more smart products in 2019. This smart home push begins with the smart blinds that are releasing in ‘some markets’. The highest profile product will be a smart speaker: SYMFONISK, this will be in collaboration with Sonos. Which, consequently, is part of a long-term Future Home Sound Project.
SYMFONISK was first teased in June last year and is expected to hit stores ‘mid to end of the year’. The smart speaker was designed to fit in to various pieces of IKEA furniture. Which not only makes sense in the home of customers but even easier for the retail powerhouse to show off it within their stores.
Will this foray into the Smart Home market dent the grip that the big boys have on it? Will people take IKEA seriously in the tech world? Only time will tell, but if done right IKEA have a great outlook on things, after all, we all buy our flat packed furniture from there, why not our smart home tech if it were integrated perfectly?
For a more extensive look at how IKEA are taking on the smart home market please click here to check out WIRED’s deep dive look at IKEA’s Smart Home Invasion.
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