Comcast will soon significantly expand its home automation capabilities across its entire Xfinity services product portfolio, which includes X1 (TV and voice remote), xFi (WiFi), Xfinity Home (home security), and Xfinity Mobile. The move will enable Comcast to put access to smart home controls into the hands of more than 15 million Xfinity customers at no additional cost. It also will make the adoption of digital home technologies and innovative Internet of Things (IoT) experiences much more accessible to many more people by democratizing and simplifying home automation.
For example, controlling a home could be as simple as having customers use their X1 voice remote to say, “Good Night,” and automatically lock doors, turn off lights, adjust thermostats, and arm their home security system. Alternatively, a customer could receive a notification when her daughter returns home from school by integrating geo-location technology in a smartphone with a connection to the home xFi Wireless Gateway.
“Xfinity will be the home operating system that integrates every IoT device and transforms a connected home into an intelligent home,” said Chris Satchell, EVP and Chief Product Officer. “Our engineers are working to enable our customers to easily control their connected devices, making full use of our Xfinity platforms, such as Voice Control, X1, xFi and Xfinity Home. We also will add value to that experience by giving customers contextual suggestions for automation that will help them take full advantage of their digital home, making it more useful, fun, and enjoyable.”
Americans are expected to have an average of 50 WiFi connected devices in their homes by 2020. The challenges of connecting and managing all those devices will only grow more frustrating and complicated without a seamless and integrated way to manage and control them all. Xfinity, as the home operating system, will continue to integrate and simplify the digital home for its customers with several key efforts:
In September 2017, Comcast acquired Stringify, an award-winning tech startup that today provides a cloud-powered automation service for more than 500 IoT products and digital services. Stringify’s technology will soon be integrated into Xfinity’s products and services, significantly expanding the capabilities of Xfinity automation. With the Stringify integration, Xfinity customers will be able to create and utilize a huge number of valuable rules and controls for a growing ecosystem of popular brands like August, Carrier, Chamberlain, ecobee, GE, Honeywell, Kwikset, Liftmaster, LIFX, Lutron, Nest, Netgear Arlo, Philips Hue, Danalock, Sengled, SkyBell, Tile, Yale, Zen Ecosystems and more for no additional charge.
‘Works with Xfinity’ Program
Comcast’s ‘Works with Xfinity’ program facilitates the integration of smart home devices into its single, unified Xfinity platform and provides increased choice and flexibility to Xfinity customers. The company plans to expand its partner ecosystem to include new product categories such as: wearables, automotive, voice assistants, email, social media platforms, and more. New partners will help improve an Xfinity customer’s lifestyle, whether for convenience, entertainment, peace of mind, or to help run their home more efficiently.
xFi is a New Way to WiFi
WiFi is critical for the digital home, and, in May 2017, Comcast launched xFi to provide customers with a simple digital dashboard to set up their home WiFi network, find their password, see what devices are connected, troubleshoot issues, set parental controls and even pause WiFi access on their home network during dinner or bedtime. The xFi experience is currently available to nearly 15 million Xfinity Internet customers with a compatible device – the xFi Wireless Gateway or the xFi Advanced Gateway – and can be controlled via a mobile app, website and on the TV with the X1 voice remote. In the first eight months, more than four million customers have utilized this new service.
Mesh WiFi with xFi Pods
Comcast recently announced that customers in Boston and Chicago can now purchase xFi Pods, which are mesh WiFi extenders. xFi Pods cost $119 for a three-pack and $199 for a six-pack. With a focus on simplicity, these zero-configuration xFi Pods deliver great whole-home WiFi coverage by using Machine Learning to constantly adapt to each customer’s unique environment. Availability will rapidly expand to a full national rollout in the coming months.
X1 Voice Phone Finder
Phone Finder is a new feature that enables Xfinity Mobile customers to search for and locate their mobile phone in their home using the X1 voice remote. There’s no set up required – customers just say “Xfinity Mobile, find my phone” into their X1 voice remote, and the phone rings.
Xfinity Cameras Deliver Intelligent Peace of Mind
Comcast recently added enhanced features to Xfinity Home Security Cameras to help consumers monitor their front doors. Its new AI-powered platform identifies movement, centers on the subject, and delivers a crystal-clear thumbnail image to customers so they can always know what’s happening with just a glance in our app.