In an effort to grow the customer base for its Echo line of smart speakers smart home products, Amazon is teaming up with one of the most well-known furniture-makers in the world: IKEA.
The deal will allow owners of IKEA’s new smart light bulbs to control them using their Echo devices. Users will be able to instruct Alexa, Amazon’s virtual assistant, to turn on the lights or adjust their brightness.
Currently, IKEA’s lights can be operated through a separate smartphone app. Thanks to the new partnership, users will be able to control their lights without the app.
The deal will give IKEA the opportunity to sell its smart bulbs to the millions of Echo owners. But the deal is not exclusive to Amazon. IKEA plans to soon open up control of its light bulbs to Google’s Home smart speakers and to Apple devices through the iPhone maker’s HomeKit system, which will users to ask allow Siri to turn on their IKEA lights.
The furniture maker’s hopes to make having a smart home simple and inexpensive, Björn Block, the company’s Home Smart business leader, said in a press release.
“Making our products work with others on the market takes us one step closer to meet people’s needs, making it easier to interact with your smart home products,” Block said.
IKEA’s smart bulbs start at $US12 each. The company also offers a gateway device, which allows users to control the bulbs with an app, for $US30,
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