Google Eyes Home Security, While Apple Ponders Smart Home Market

Reports suggest that Google is in talks to acquire home security firm Dropcam, while Apple plans to launch a Jetson’s-style home automation platform to ramp up competition with Google.

Just months after Google acquired Nest Learning Thermostat for $3.2 billion, multiple reports claim the firm is now eyeing home security firm Dropcam.

Launched in 2009, Dropcam sells a $150 camera that can stream footage to PCs and mobile devices, reports.

The firm recently announced that it plans to develop people-detection software for Dropcam’s cloud video recording subscribers in August. Additionally, the camera provider will launch Dropcam Tabs, an optional motion sensor designed to track movement with a three-axis accelerometer and a three-axis magnetometer.

Some analysts are saying that the deal would be Google’s most controversial buy if it goes through due to privacy concerns over automated home surveillance. Some critics are concerned that Google would attach its current policies toward collecting user information for its targeted ad business on live video feeds of users’ homes, Apple Insider reports.

Apple also has plans to throw its hat into the home automation ring to compete with Google and its other rival, Samsung. Next week, the manufacturer will reportedly unveil a new software platform that would turn the iPhone into a remote control for lights, security systems, thermostats and other connected appliances, Financial Times reports.

Apple detailed plans for its “Jetsons-style” integrated system in its patent filing, published in November last year. One example of the technology is that an iPhone will wirelessly signal a homeowner’s arrival, prompting a home’s lights to automatically turn on when the owner enters the residence.

Additionally, users will be able to user their iPhones or iPads in conjunction with the Apple TV box to control other connected home devices. The firm also considers privacy as a key advantage over Google, and will likely strive to provide additional checks and assurances that certified products are not vulnerable to hackers, Financial Times reports.

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