Know The Home Automation Company That Got Acquired In Billions
2018 was a big year for mergers, acquisitions, and IPOs in home electronics, including IoT, smart home, lighting, and security. With the most notable M&A event of the year being Amazon’s acquisition of safety and home automation provider Ring for nearly $1 billion. The home automation sector has achieved unprecedented heights.
The Ring acquisition gives Amazon a highly popular brand of video doorbells and related surveillance products, a professionally monitored DIY security system (Ring Alarm), and perhaps most importantly, a massive network of highly connected communities via the Ring Neighbourhood app. The acquisition would also expand Amazon’s product portfolio and help it capitalize on the rising demand for home security products.
Founded in 2012, Ring (based in US), provides comprehensive integrated automation solutions from hardwired smart doorbells to battery-powered doorbells designed to replace your door’s peephole. Ring also offers stand-alone security cameras such as the Stick-Up Cam Wired, devices for lighting and other accessories. It has established itself in the smart home automation sector with its variety of home security devices.
Amazon’s Home Automation Strategy & Future Goal On Ring Acquisition
- Expansion Into Home Security Hardware
Amazon’s relationship with Ring started in 2016 through Alexa Fund. The Amazon investment enabled Rings’ products to get into Alexa APIs and features, enabling consumers to use voice to access camera feeds directly from Echo Show and Fire TV. In December 2018, Amazon acquired a startup Blink getting popular for its exclusive chip-based home security cameras and video doorbell for an estimated $90 million. By acquiring Ring after Blink, Amazon played the smart move towards strengthening its position in the security domain.
Amazon is benefiting both in terms of blink’s technical advantage and Ring’s market advantage. While the Blink is for providing low-power chips that could extend the life and power-efficiency of Amazon’s cameras, Ring acquisition offers Amazon with popular consumer electronics market.
- Countering the Google Progress
By acquiring Ring, Amazon adds on a feature in Alexa and a lead in its race against Google and Apple to control homes filled with connected appliances. The Nest is a leading player in the smart-home security field and makes internet-connected thermostats, smoke detectors and security cameras that work with both Google and Amazon’s virtual assistants. There is speculation that Amazon’s Ring acquisition is meant to counter Google’s progress in home security. Google entered the business of smart security cameras by acquiring Nest in 2014 for $3.2 billion.
Amazon’s digital assistant Alexa is well integrated with the new Door View Cam. By acquiring Ring, Amazon’s customers can now choose from a large selection of home security products, cameras, and solutions under the Amazon umbrella, including:
- Ring Video Doorbells, Ring Spotlight Cams, Ring Floodlight Cams, and all Ring Accessories
- Blink XT Indoor/Outdoor Camera, Blink Indoor Security Camera, and Blink Accessories
- Amazon Cloud Cam
Ring, Blink, and Amazon Cloud Cam will continue to operate under their respective brands. Customers will not experience any interruption in service and can contact the appropriate company’s customer service team with any questions or issues.
According to Global Data forecasts, the automated home market reached $23 billion in 2018 and is expected to reach $75 billion by 2025, rising at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 18 percent. The growth will be driven by smart thermostats, which are becoming increasingly common as consumers and governments aim to control energy consumption.
Amazon has achieved this with Alexa and Echo before, and Ring continues the pattern. It provides a boost to Amazon’s eCommerce as well as its expanding smart home segment. As Amazon becomes more integral to the growing smart home market, moves that combine tech and retail will only become important for the company. Amazon is trying to synergize the two seemingly disparate markets in new and interesting ways by supplying customers with a competitive edge and new services.
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– Shruti Khanna (ICT Licensing) and The Editorial Team