Amazon has signed an agreement to acquire Eero. The San Francisco-based company specializes in making home Wi-Fi hardware. The announcement was made on Monday. Eero makes white Wi-Fi router pucks. The pucks can easily be plugged in and around the house. The Wi-Fi system by the company is created to give users reliable coverage in every part of their house. It’s said to be more effective than a single traditional Wi-Fi router.
The total value of this deal is yet to be officially disclosed by the two companies. But Eero has experienced significant growth over the last few years. The company has managed to raise a total of $90 million in funding too. The acquisition deal is another clear indication of Amazon’s growing efforts to dominate the connected home niche. The company has already dominated the US market with its Echo smart speakers as well as the streaming device Fire TV.
Just recently, Amazon also unveiled a series of household appliances that can be controlled using its voice assistant Alexa. It’s not hard to see why the e-commerce giant is targeting home Wi-Fi in its strategy. After all, Wi-Fi connectivity is the foundation of all the smart devices at home including the ones that Amazon is selling. In addition to this, Amazon will want to have its own Wi-Fi product just like its biggest competitor in the smart home market - Google. The search engine giant already has a Wi-Fi connectivity product called Google Wi-Fi.
But the acquisition of Eero shows that Amazon is angling for simplicity. The company feels that simple Wi-Fi devices that are easy to set up could prove very important in the adoption of smart home devices in the future. Eero offers exactly that. At the moment, setting up a Wi-Fi connection for home-based smart devices is not easy. Users have to go through a very hectic process including downloading required software, pairing devices with the voice assistant, and just the overall hardware setup. This makes the idea of a smart home viable only for techies. Amazon wants to change that with a plug and play solution.
This is not the first time that Amazon is acquiring a startup in the smart home niche. The company also announced the acquisition of smart doorbell company Ring in April last year. The deal was valued at $839 million. At the time of its acquisition, Ring had managed to raise $209 million in capital. Amazon has also had a previous relationship with Eero through its Launchpad landing page. The page was dedicated towards selling products by startups. In 2015, Eero was largely promoted through the page and it eventually became one of the top sellers.
Amazon has also expanded the number of smart home devices that can be controlled with its voice assistant software Alexa. Just last month, the retail giant said that there were a total of 28,000 smart home devices from 4,500 brands that worked with Alexa. The strategy so far has been to get as many of these smart devices into homes. The acquisition of Eero may just pave the way for this but more could still come from the e-commerce giant.