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Samsung Launches Smart Home Service

SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA – Samsung will begin rolling out a proprietary connected-home platform in the U.S. and Korea this month.

Its Smart Home Service, first announced at 2014 International CES, will allow users to operate select Samsung home products including smart TVs, majaps, cameras, smartphones and wearable devices through a single application, which connects the devices through a wireless home network.

In the U.S., compatible products at launch will include all 2014 smart-TV models, a smart French door refrigerator and front-load washer, the Samsung Gear 2 smart watch, and smartphones using Android OS version 4.1 or later.

Smart ovens, light bulbs and a shut-off voice command will be added in the second half, and the ecosystem will eventually extend to robot vacuum cleaners, the Gear Fit fitness band, and medical, home security and energy management systems.

Dr. WonPyo Hong, president of Samsung Electronics’ Media Solution Center, said the platform will enable consumers to turn off connected devices throughout the home such as smart bulbs and air conditioners by speaking the words “good night” into the TV remote.

Similarly, the mobile app will allow users to check the status of their laundry and to select specific wash settings remotely.

“We are excited that the launch of Samsung Smart Home makes the connected home a reality today and allows our customers to live a smarter life,” he said. “Samsung Smart Home lets people live better, worry less and be smarter with their devices and appliances.”

Hong led the creation last year of an internal organization, the Smart Home Steering Committee, to align all of Samsung’s product groups, including its R&D arm, behind the platform and co-ordinate the development of innovative services and commercial partnerships around the service.

Users can register for the Smart Home mobile app through their Samsung account or download it to their smartphones from Samsung Apps or Google Play. The app for TVs, as well as a separate Tizen platform app for the Gear 2, from iControl Networks, will be available this month.

Through the app, users can add and manage all compatible devices and appliances that are connected to the home network. Once a device has been added, it can be set up in a few steps using the app’s intuitive user interface, and all data that is transmitted by the app is encrypted for increased security, the company said.

The U.S. and Korea were selected to kick off the platform’s global launch, and more nations will be added throughout the year.