Kara Swisher

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SmartThings Raises $12.5 Million to Internet Some More Things


SmartThings, the open platform for powering home-automation efforts, has received $12.5 million from Greylock Partners and Highland Capital Partners.

The Washington, D.C.-based startup said it would use the money from its Series A funding to improve its products and increase distribution.

SmartThings, which began as a Kickstarter initiative, had previously raised $3 million. It sells a starter kit for close to $200 that lets consumers control various things in the home — from lighting to climate or security — via a mobile application. That includes actions such as detecting motion or closing a garage door.

These kinds of products are often referred to under the meme of the “Internet of Things” — a much overused term in tech right now — which is essentially digitizing and connecting an ever wider variety of devices.

As part of the transaction, SmartThings said Greylock’s Josh Elman and Highland’s Manish Patel will join its board of directors.

As Lauren Goode wrote when SmartThings demoed at the 11th D: All Things Digital conference in late May: “The notion that one’s home appliances could all be connected in some way — and respond with a simple tap, swipe or voice command — was once only a reality for the very wealthy or the very nerdy. Now, anyone with a Wi-Fi router at home can automate their appliances.”

At D11, Alex Hawkinson, the creator of SmartThings, showed its Rise and Shine app, which turned on the lights, raised the shades and made the connected coffee pot start to brew.

SmartThings is an open platform, which allows a wide variety of developers to create different applications for it.

Here is the video of SmartThings at D11:

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— Om Malik on Bloomberg TV, talking about Yahoo, the September issue of Vogue Magazine, and our overdependence on Google