Samsung has recently released its Software Development Kit 5.0, which will give third-party developers a new platform for making apps. This software update will allow outside companies to integrate their own devices with Samsung's Smart TV system, which use Google's PNaCL (pronounced pinnacle) technology.
In the past, users were required to buy a "smart hub", like Staples Connect in order to link all of their smart devices. But now, any appliance manufacturer could create an app that—for example—displays an onscreen message when your laundry finishes during a movie. Or perhaps introduce an app for people with limited mobility or who travel frequently, allowing them to control all of their appliances from a central location. This could prove to be a huge step in making smart technology more palatable to consumers.
Version 5.0 is still in beta testing, but we'll keep you updated on this and other smart home news during our live coverage of International CES 2014 from January 7-10.