Samsung to Buy SmartThings
Samsung said it has agreed to purchase a startup called SmartThings. SmartThings, which is based in Washington, develops technology for the Internet of Things. It sells a home controller device for $99, but has also created an online service to help developers design and create their own internet-enabled and smartphone-controlled gadgets. The company claims 8,000 apps and 1,000 devices use its platform. SmartThings will move its operations to Palo Alto, Calif., where Samsung has a developer facility, but SmartThings' CEO Alex Hawkinson said the company will be run independently. The move is largely seen as a way for Samsung to counter steps made by Google and Apple to expand the functionality of their smartphones and tablets to control household items. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Synaptics Says A 'Top Five' Phone Company to Use Its Under-the-Glass Fingerprint Reader
Synaptics today said of the five largest phone manufacturers in the world has agreed to use its Clear ID FS9500 optical, in-display fingerprint sensor. The FS9500 can scan fingerprints through the full thickness of smartphone cover glass, which means device makers can create sleek, button-free designs and still include a fingerprint reader on the front.
Google Home Gains More Home Automation Powers
Google today expanded the number of third-party smart home apps that can be controlled by its Google Home product. Owners of Google Home can now control Belkin Wemo and Honeywell smart home products via Google Home.
Samsung Connect Tag Lets You Track Your Stuff
Samsung today announced the Connect Tag, a wireless fob that you can attach to just about anything to monitor its location. Samsung envisions the Connect Tag will work best on kids' backpacks, car keys, dog collars, or even tossed inside cars.
Samsung Makes Its Internet Browser Available to Most Android Phones
Samsung has made a version of its mobile browser available to non-Samsung handsets. The company has been beta testing Samsung Internet Browser on Nexus and Pixel phones since April.
I'd be disappointed if they bought dumb things...