ZigBee support coming to Samsung phones, HTC and others may follow suit
Samsung devices might in future incorporate support for ZigBee wireless technology - so your next Samsung Galaxy smartphone could directly control your automated home, Pocket-lint has been told by a source close to the matter.
The ZigBee Alliance has a set of standard protocols that pulls together the wireless control of various products, from lighting to switches, to heating controls, giving you smart home automation. The Philips Hue, for example, uses ZigBee.
Samsung is no stranger to ZigBee, having previously produced various ZigBee products as part of the alliance. Earlier in the year, Samsung announced a new line of ZigBee-compatible retrofit LED lightbulbs. Support for the standards, however, would mean that all control could be easily integrated into your device, rather than needing a separate remote, or a selection of different control apps: it could be a one-stop ZigBee shop.
And the information we've been given doesn't stop with Samsung. While Samsung's plans were confirmed, including its having considered a ZigBee accessory dongle to be first to market, we're also hearing that HTC is interested in taking control of your home.
The current HTC One offers IR control, but our source suggests that the real interest moving forward will be in RF4CE support, which is used in entertainment devices such as set-top particularly, partilcularly in the US.
There's also interest, we're told, in creating a new generation of "home smartphones". The concept here is that you'll be able to use the device as a regular phone, as well as a controller for all of your ZigBee-connected devices, rather than having a separate dumb phone and remote.
So it looks like the next battleground in the smartphone wars will be home automation, looking to make it even easier to control your smart home wirelessly from one device. There's currently no confirmation of timeline, but we'll keep you updated when we hear more.