Track the companies that matter to you. It's FREE! Click one of these fan favorites to get started: Apple; Google; Ford.



Could This Little Known Company Disrupt the Internet of Things?

The Vivint Sky system connects lights, locks, cameras and motion sensors all under one automated hub. Source: Vivint.

There's no shortage of companies already making devices and services for connected homes, and this week, another one threw its hat into the ring. The security company Vivint just took another step into the Internet of Things with its new Sky hub -- a completely integrated home automation system -- that it says will directly compete with Apple's (NASDAQ: AAPL  ) new HomeKit platform.

But Vivint's system differs drastically from the iMaker's approach -- and it's still unclear whether Apple's open approach will win out over closed systems like Vivint's. 

One solution to end them all
Right now, there are a lot of companies making home door locks, lightbulbs, and thermostats that are controlled through a smartphone or tablet via the Internet or Bluetooth. Vivint is attempting to simplify this by not only creating a platform for home automation, but also the products. This means Vivint makes its own thermostat, doors, locks, cameras, etc. that work on its connected home platform. It also means there's absolutely no way another company's products, like the Nest thermostat, would work with Vivint Sky.

In addition to controlling all of Vivint's tech through one app, the devices also monitor a user's habits and then makes suggestions on ways to save energy.

Vivint's system only works with the company's own products. Source: Vivint.

But Apple thinks the Internet of Things, or IoT, home should be built with devices from different companies, all connected to the same platform. And this is where Vivint and Apple's plans differ.

The home Apple built
Vivint made its thoughts on Apple's HomeKit known this week when the company told Mashable that, "Apple's system is a hodgepodge of other third-party gadgets."

At WWDC last week, Apple made a shift from its closed ecosystem roots and debuted the HomeKit platform, which allows connected home products from different companies to communicate with each other and be paired together through Apple's platform, and integrated with Siri.

Apple's new HomeKit will allow third-party smart home devices to communicate with each other. Source: Apple.

This means that an iPhone user will soon be able to tell Siri it's time for bed and a Honeywell smart thermostat would lower the temperature, while lights made from Phillips will dim, and Kwikset smart locks will lock the front door simultaneously. Apple's approach is to make the iPad and iPhone the core devices for home automation, removing the need for multiple apps and networks.

Who wins in home automation
While Vivint is releasing its connected home system at the right time, I have a hard time believing the company can win out over Apple's approach of integrating devices from across the smart home market. Even Samsung, who revealed its SmartHome platform for its own devices earlier this year, plans to open up the system to other non-Samsung home automation products as well.

Soon, the Internet of Things will be a system of interconnected devices and systems communicating with us and each other, and no single company will be able to dictate how that communication is done -- which leaves the space wide open for Apple's collaborative HomeKit approach.

One stock for the Internet of Things
While Vivint may not be the small company to disrupt the Internet of Things, there is one stock The Motley Fool believes could change the face of IoT. Click here now to find out which company it is and to receive the special free report. 

Read/Post Comments (1) | Recommend This Article (0)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

  • Report this Comment On November 22, 2014, at 9:29 PM, cord wrote:

    "This means Vivint makes its own thermostat, doors, locks, cameras, etc. that work on its connected home platform"

    No, it doesn't mean that. Vivint does not make any of the equip or zwave gear. The panel is a rebranded 2GIG Go!2.0, the sensors are 2GIG, the cameras are ADC (, the tstat is a radio thermastat, the locks are Kwikset...

    All Vivint does is brand the equip with their logo.

Add your comment.

Sponsored Links

Leaked: Apple's Next Smart Device
(Warning, it may shock you)
The secret is out... experts are predicting 458 million of these types of devices will be sold per year. 1 hyper-growth company stands to rake in maximum profit - and it's NOT Apple. Show me Apple's new smart gizmo!

DocumentId: 2988996, ~/Articles/ArticleHandler.aspx, 8/29/2015 3:42:20 AM

Report This Comment

Use this area to report a comment that you believe is in violation of the community guidelines. Our team will review the entry and take any appropriate action.

Sending report...

Chris Neiger

Chris has covered Tech and Telecom companies for The Motley Fool since 2012. Follow him on Twitter for the latest tech stock coverage.

Today's Market

updated 6 hours ago Sponsored by:
DOW 16,643.01 -11.76 -0.07%
S&P 500 1,988.87 1.21 0.06%
NASD 4,828.33 15.62 0.32%

Create My Watchlist

Go to My Watchlist

You don't seem to be following any stocks yet!

Better investing starts with a watchlist. Now you can create a personalized watchlist and get immediate access to the personalized information you need to make successful investing decisions.

Data delayed up to 5 minutes

Related Tickers

8/28/2015 4:00 PM
AAPL $113.29 Up +0.37 +0.33%
Apple CAPS Rating: ****
HON $100.02 Up +0.13 +0.13%
Honeywell Internat… CAPS Rating: ****
PHG $25.81 Down -0.09 -0.35%
Koninklijke Philip… CAPS Rating: ****
SSNLF $875.00 Up +25.00 +2.94%
Samsung CAPS Rating: ***