IFTTT Competitor and CEDIA Keynoter Stringify Kills Home Automation App

After acquisition, Comcast kills Stringify app, which is ‘much better’ than IFTTT as an if/then home-automation engine; company recommends IFTTT and Yonomi IoT platforms instead. [grumpy baby]

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IFTTT Competitor and CEDIA Keynoter Stringify Kills Home Automation App

Comcast's decimation of the Stringify home-automation app is grumpy-baby-worthy.

“Stringify co-founder Dave Evans gave the CEDIA Expo 2017 keynote address on the future of IoT and intelligent things, just days before Comcast bought the company and its if/then engine home-automation engine.

Now Comcast is killing the Stringify app, which is “much better” than competitor IFTTT, according to at least one peeved user responding to Stringify's Tweet: “Stringify has announced that it will be shutting down in the upcoming months.”

“So disappointed and angry about this,” tweeted another user. “Stringify was the best for smart home automation and some of the flows can not be re-created easily using other services. It's something I'd have paid to keep! Shame on you @comcast shame!”

And when words fail one disgruntled customer … This:

At the end of the day, though, Stringify wasn't all that popular. The company has 4,300 Twitter followers vs. IFTTT's 166k.

Besides, the consumer-facing Stringify app was created as a proof-of-concept for a would-be acquirer or big-time partner like Comcast. The app was never destined for mass consumption or eternal development.

But Stringify Promised, They PROMISED

Stringify announced in September 2017 that it would be acquired by Comcast and rolled into the Xfinity Home (security and home automation) and xFi (networking) groups.

“While we will be removing Stringify from app stores today, we will continue to operate and support the service for existing users through the month of June.”

— Stringify

“In the coming days, you will see an update to our terms of service noting that the Stringify service data will now go to Comcast,” the company said at the time. “Moving forward, we will also be working with our fantastic partners to continue to operate and evolve the Stringify service.”

By “evolve the service,” Stringify evidently meant evolve it as a smart-home engine for Comcast, not a standalone app for public consumption.

Even so, they played a good game, announcing in 2018 (“Drum roll please …”) a new look and feel that “brings the experience closer to other Xfinity apps, while retaining all the functionality you’ve come to enjoy.”

The cheery news continued: “In addition to building powerful new automation features for Xfinity customers, we’re also really excited about evolving the Stringify app. … The work we do here [Comcast Labs] will help to inform and advance Comcast’s vision of the connected home.”

In that same announcement, Signify introduced new integrations with Lutron Caseta lighting and Serena shades, as well as Cor Wi-Fi thermostats from Carrier. 

“Hang on, there's more,” the company goaded. “We are also unveiling our first crack at a watch app for Android Wear.”

Alas, Stringify is “sorry to inform you” that its app is no longer available, and service and support for existing users will end on June 30.

“This isn’t a decision we made lightly,” the company explains, “but as our focus increasingly shifts to developing new connected-home experiences at Comcast, we made a strategic decision to step back from developing the app.”

In its stead, Stringify recommends IFTTT, Yonomi or WebCore for SmartThings.

Stringify users would create “Flows” comprised of smart “Things” to activate complex if/then scenes.

Stringify Notice: Shutting Down

08 Apr The Stringify Service is Shutting Down

Posted at 07:54h in Stringify News by Stringify

After nearly five years of transforming how people automate their connected lives, I’m sorry to inform you that we are beginning the process of deactivating the Stringify app.  This isn’t a decision we made lightly, but as our focus increasingly shifts to developing new connected-home experiences at Comcast, we made a strategic decision to step back from developing the app.

You don’t need to take any action right away. While we will be removing Stringify from app stores today, we will continue to operate and support the service for existing users through the month of June. When we deactivate the app, we will also delete all of your user data.

We know that Stringify plays a big part in our users’ daily lives, and we want to make sure everyone has plenty of time to adjust.  

To that end, I’d also like to offer a couple of recommendations of potential technology alternatives. While I’d encourage you to do your own research, our team thinks these solutions each offer unique value.

IFTTT – A great free-to-use service that offers a lot of the same functions and capabilities as Stringify.

Yonomi – Another free-to-use service that supports many connected devices and experiences.

WebCore – For users of Samsung SmartThings platform. Some folks on our team have been using and enjoying it.  

About the Author

Julie Jacobson
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Julie Jacobson:

Julie Jacobson is founding editor of CE Pro, the leading media brand for the home-technology channel. She has covered the smart-home industry since 1994, long before there was much of an Internet, let alone an Internet of things. Currently she studies, speaks, writes and rabble-rouses in the areas of home automation, security, networked A/V, wellness-related technology, biophilic design, and the business of home technology. Julie majored in Economics at the University of Michigan, spent a year abroad at Cambridge University, and earned an MBA from the University of Texas at Austin. She is a recipient of the annual CTA TechHome Leadership Award, and a CEDIA Fellows honoree. A washed-up Ultimate Frisbee player, Julie currently resides in San Antonio, Texas and sometimes St. Paul, Minn. Follow on Twitter: @juliejacobson

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ARTICLE TAGS:

ComcastIFTTTIoTMergers and AcquisitionsStringifyXfinityYonomi