LG and Samsung have announced that their own applications would let you manage smart devices from competing brands.
The Home Connectivity Alliance (HCA), which was established in 2021 and whose basic specification was unveiled at the CES trade show in January 2023, is responsible for this.
Why does this matter? Certain LG products will eventually be controllable via Samsung’s SmartThings platform or Samsung devices via the LG ThinQ app.
What equipment? Although the categories on the list have already been declared, no specific models have.
They consist of “long-life appliances, HVAC systems, and TVs,” according to the HCA. The term “HVAC” stands for heating, ventilation, and air conditioning, which means TVs and other large equipment with smart features.
According to the release, this cross-manufacturer strategy would start to be implemented by partners LG, Samsung, and Vestel in “Q4 2023 and continue into 2024.”
Because of how HCA functions, there is optimism that this will also apply to several currently available products.
The Home Connectivity Alliance (HCA) is what, exactly?
Instead of connecting particular devices, it connects platforms like Samsung SmartThings and LG ThinQ.
With a standard named Matter, the strategy has also been tried before.
Although that open source connectivity standard was introduced in 2019, it hasn’t made much of a difference in the problems associated with product interoperability.
The key partners in this case, LG and Samsung, have made statements that make it abundantly clear that they still view this from the standpoint of having more people use their platform rather than HCA allowing them to use a competitor’s.
“We expect the smart home market to achieve new levels of scale by enabling our consumers to control multiple brands of appliances and HVAC products through SmartThings,” claims Samsung.
“LG ThinQ enables a seamlessly interconnected home appliance ecosystem that will provide new smart home experiences to customers around the globe,” claims LG.
The HCA project presently has 15 brands on board.
In addition to those already mentioned, those having a major presence in the UK include AEG, Beko, Electrolux, Haier, and Grundig.
One of the eight nations slated to receive HCA functionality first is the UK.
The US, France, and Germany are a few more examples of important marketplaces.
The HCA Specification 2.0, which is scheduled in 2024, is expected to have further plans.
The management of chargers for electric vehicles will be one of the new capabilities, according to a statement from Samsung.
Could HCA put a stop to problems with smart home technology? Maybe, even if it makes sense that it wouldn’t cover features that were exclusive to a given manufacturer and wouldn’t work well with an open control standard.