Logitech Harmony API brings voice, gesture control to the smart home

Back in October, we mentioned that peripheral company Logitech had been looking at 2015 as a big year in both the peripherals and smart home spheres, and it has started off with quite a bang with respect to the latter. The company has announced the Logitech Harmony API that will allow developers to plug into the Logitech Harmony platform and create smart home “experiences”.

Read more: Beyond periphery: Logitech promises a ‘big year’ for South Africa in 2015

The API will also have command of “more than 270,000 home entertainment and automation devices” and companies like SmartThings, IFTTT, Ivee, Myo, Playtabase and UCIU (and its Ubi product) have begun development of products using the API. Essentially, this means that more devices and technologies will be able to plug into the Harmony platform.

Mark Spates, head of Logitech Harmony’s smart home platform, cited entertainment and smart home inter connectivity as a main driver for the API’s launch:

We know that entertainment is critical to the smart home experience, and will be a main driver for mass adoption of smart home products. By opening our platform to developers, we’re giving developers the ability to create complete smart home experiences that include the living room, knowing that their entertainment component will offer the same flawless experience that consumers have come to expect from Harmony.

Using the API, developers can leverage some of Harmony’s features including voice commands like “Watch a Movie” and gesture control by “starting your favorite movie with a wave of your arm.”

Logitech Harmony API remotes 1

Of course, the main driver behind this is Logitech’s swathe of Harmony universal control products, including the range of smart remotes and keyboards. It would make sense for the company to increase the number of devices they can control, streamlining the smart home experience in the process.

Nevertheless, it’s an exciting time for the smart home industry, with CES 2015 showing many what will be possible in the future, from switching on a TV using a simple phrase to setting an alarm remotely. Logitech however isn’t the only player in this space, with Google, Apple and Samsung all gunning to control home gadgets in the future.

Will we see any new Harmony products coming to South Africa anytime soon? Country Sales Manager Robert Anderson has previously noted that the country could see the Harmony name more often in the latter end of this year, but it’s not a definite.

Have a look at the company’s current Smart Home Control product below for an idea of what’s possible.



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