Amazon have just made a big play for the smart home market by purchasing the smart home manufacturer Ring.
In a deal worth over $1 billion, the behemoth online retailer has entered the fray and placed itself once again in direct competition with internet giant Google.
Not content to stop there, it has been reported that Amazon has told Google that it will no longer sell their Nest smart home devices. During a conference call, the content of which has been reported by an insider, Amazon’s retail team insinuated that the order came right from the top.
From Jeff Bezos, Amazon’s CEO.
These big money, big market games are a usual occurrence for the course between these two companies. Amazon already refuses to sell a number of Google products, including the Pixel smartphone and Google Home Speaker.
The fight now centres around the smart home market, tipped to be one of the biggest new markets for the coming years.
And as both Amazon and Google have underperformed in the smartphone market, with Apple and Samsung taking the lion’s share, both companies are keen to be the first to smash open and achieve ubiquity in the market.
It seems by purchasing Ring and purging its own retail site of all Google smart home devices, Amazon may have made a huge play that might see off their main rivals.
This is because Amazon has enormous power over the online retail space, which gives them a huge advantage over their competitors. And it’s true that many people do exclusively use Amazon for their online shopping needs.
But while these two corporate behemoths battle it out over their smart home devices and where they can be sold, they might be ignoring something that they would be better off paying a little attention to.
Amazon may have a massive retail site, but it is far from the only place to do a bit of online shopping.
Google may be the world’s biggest search engine, but it isn’t the internet.
What these two companies are ignoring is that there are thousands of channels through which consumers discover and buy products.
A smart home device represents a significant investment for most people, and when most people make a significant investment they tend to do plenty of online research first.
This means that, although Amazon’s exclusion of Google smart home devices from their retail site may help them to gain some market share, it is not the hammer blow it might seem to be at first.
Even Google can’t control what the huge number of review sites, blogs and comparison sites say about these products. At the end of the day, it is through these channels that the smart home race will be won.
Although Google and Amazon are likely set to dominate the smart home market, there will still be room for smaller manufacturers who provide products of a similar or better quality to take a little of that market for themselves.
And of course, as long as Amazon and Google are using their smart home devices to gather and sell your data, there will always be room for smaller companies that don’t.