According to the Wall Street Journal, Apple is in preliminary talks alongside Microsoft and Google to acquire home automation start up R2 Studios, created by the maker of the Slingbox:
A secretive startup founded by the man who popularized the Slingbox has been in talks with companies considering buying it, people close to the company say, with Microsoft Corp., Google Inc. and Apple Inc. cited as participants.
The startup, id8 Group R2 Studios Inc., was created in May 2011 by entrepreneur Blake Krikorian. He founded Sling Media Inc., maker of the Slingbox for watching TV on computers, and sold it to EchoStar in 2007.
R2 Studios has technology related to home media and automation and also holds patents related to controlling certain electronics and interfaces. The home market is seen as the next market for tech companies to infiltrate and exploit. The company does have an existing Android app to control heating and lighting systems wirelessly. Below is a video of r2’s founder, Blake Krikorian of id8 Group:
Apple has long been rumoured to be making a television, which could play into the living rooms of households across the globe.
Former Apple executive Tony Fadell (known as the father of the iPod) has successfully marketed and sold his electronic Nest thermostat, which can be controlled from anywhere via an iOS device.