Somfy, the giant France-based manufacturer of motorized shading systems, is seeking to take back the smart home with two recent IoT acquisitions – MyFox and OpenWays (Okidokeys) – and the re-launch of its Tahoma home automation system. The company will appear at CES 2017 as Somfy Protect.
Somfy launched Tahoma in 2010, primarily as a simple solution to help window-covering professionals get into the home-automation business. At the time, it was powered by a SHaaS (smart home as a service) platform from Bulogics, which became Zonoff.
The product was generally well reviewed, but failed to gain traction among the intended customer base.
Now the company has re-upped in the IoT category, creating multiple IoT hubs and smart devices, along with a SHaaS platform for remote access and integration.
The new Somfy smart-home portfolio includes three hubs, including the new-and-improved Tahoma Premium, as well as the barebones Connexoon for motorized shades, and the new Tahoma Serenity for security.
We will keep our U.S. readers apprised on Somfy’s smart-home developments in the U.S.
Without making much noise about it in the U.S., Somfy picked up MyFox in October 2016 for about €12 million ($13 million at the time).
Based in France, MyFox has been selling DIY home security and surveillance products in Europe since 2009 and had about €8 million ($8.7 million) in revenues at the time of the acquisition.
The alarm system ($279 for a starter kit) includes a hub, as well as peripheral devices such as sensors and smart plugs. The company’s IntelliTAG is a vibration sensor which should be installed on all potential access points, including doors or windows, advises MyFox.
The device “can detect vibrations specific to a break-in attempt through advanced algorithms,” according to the company, which further boasts that the product “detects break-ins before they even happen.”
MyFox uses a proprietary RF protocol for end devices, which connect to the Internet via the Link hub. The system integrates with third-party systems via IFTTT to enact recipes such as, “If alarm initiated, then turn on all Philips Hue lights.”
The company offers professional security monitoring on demand.
The IP camera ($179) features built-in motion detection, as well as audio analytics for alerting users remotely when smoke or CO detector sounds. A motorized shutter on the unit can be closed for privacy.
It, too, integrates through IFTTT to launch commands such as, “If Android phone connects to home Wi-Fi, then close privacy shutter.”
Somfy explains the acquisition:
The transaction marks an important stage as the Somfy Group takes its digital strategy to the next level and consolidates its positioning as a key player in the connected home market. The acquisition will contribute to the expansion of its line-up of products while deepening its expertise, particularly in digital and video. It will also boost Somfy's presence in the direct-to-consumer retail channel.
Somfy also has been relatively quiet about its January 2016 acquisition of OpenWays, which provides a “mobile keys” platform for the hospitality industry, allowing guests to bypass the check-in counter and unlock their doors via smart phone.
In 2013, OpenWays entered the consumer market with Okidokeys, but found little traction for the offering. Somfy picked up those assets as well.
OpenWays has since been rebranded OpenDoors, and the transition for Okidokeys users has been challenging, according to various forum posts.
A message on Okidokeys.com reads (via Google translation):
Thank you all for your trust
Since 2013, OKIDOKEYS has always relied on your trust and support. From an ambitious project, you have made it a reality. The connected lock is now a full-fledged product in the intelligent home market, and it is thanks to you, users and / or fans of the first hour that all this has been made possible. We would like to thank you!
The adventure goes on
The last months have been rich in change and now mark the beginning of a new era for connected lock and home access comfort. As such, the OpenDoors company takes over OKIDOKEYS innovations and launches under the label of its parent company, the SOMFY group, a new range of locks and accessories to reach within reach of all. A true new start for a product rewarded for its qualities on many occasions.
What's going to happen?
OpenDoors will continue to develop and expand its range of products, under the brand SOMFY but also by working directly with its partners, to propose ever more simplicity and efficiency in the management of access to his home. For current OKIDOKEYS customers, more information will be sent shortly by email to let you know how to continue to enjoy your products.
According to France’s Le Journal du Net (JDN), the former Okidokeys is expected to be integrated into Somfy’s SHaaS (smart home as a service) platform by Q1 2017, at which time the door locks and access-control service will be able to integrate with Tahoma.
JDN further reports (translated from French)
The commercialization of these new devices is managed within Somfy’s “connected solutions” branch, which combines security-related offerings (alarms and surveillance cameras), home automation and now the connected lock. It accounts for about 20% of the company’s annual revenues, which surpassed one billion Euros in 2015. Somfy’s motorized window-covering unit contributes about 60% of Somfy’s revenues. Products related to residential access (e.g., garage doors and motorized gates) account for the final 20% of Somfy revenues.