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Apple’s big yearly event, the Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) is right around the corner, scheduled for June 2. There, many expect to see the unveiling of its newest iteration of its mobile operating system, iOS 8, and, if we’re lucky, the iPhone 6 and maybe even the long-rumored iWatch. But new reports today claim that the company will also be lifting the curtain on a new software platform for giving everyone a shot at having a Smart Home.

According to a report in the Financial Times, unnamed sources who are “familiar with the matter” have said that Apple will offer details on a new Smart Home platform, which will give users control over their home appliances and electronics via their iPhones. One such feature the platform will offer will be to turn on the lights in a person’s home when they arrive, signaled by the presence of the user’s iPhone or iPad.

From there, says the report, appliance and device makers throughout the consumer goods industry will begin to make products designed to work with Apple’s software platform. Imagine shopping for a new refrigerator or thermostat and seeing one of the advertised features as being “iOS 8 Compatible.”

If true, the move makes a lot of sense. Google, one of Apple’s primary rivals (outside of Microsoft and Samsung, of course), entered the “Smart Home” market when the company paid $3.2 billion to acquire Nest Labs, the makers of stylish, high-tech smart thermostats and smoke alarms. Thinking that Nest was Google’s only play for having a stake in a smart living room would be naïve, and it seems that Apple isn’t waiting around to see what the search-giant has up its sleeve in that regard.

Moreover, hints have pointed to Apple pushing iOS 8 for more integration into users’ lives, with apps like Healthbook and greater iCloud functionality on the horizon. It wouldn’t be surprising if another part of that push was new abilities to control your house right from your iPhone.

We’ll have to wait until WWDC actually happens before we know if this report is the real deal. But now that you know it’s coming, start saving your money now. Those Apple Smart-LED light bulbs probably won’t be cheap.

[Source: Financial Times]


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