Behind the Carphone Warehouse & Dixons join-up
So Dixons Retail and Carphone Warehouse have just announced their £3.8bn merger – click the link for full details of the deal.
But this isn’t just a coming together of retail giants to claim greater dominance of the high street.
The pair have got something much more innovative in store – if they can pull it off.
They plan to tap into one of the hottest and most game-changing tech movements around: the internet of things.
This sees “smart” electronic devices communicating directly with each other to create new efficiencies, rather than being controlled by humans.
The vision of what will become Dixons Carphone is that your mobile phone will be connected to the other household electronic devices you own.
What does that mean in practice?
Sebastian James, CEO of Dixons and incoming CEO of Dixons Carphone, explained to Sky News: “Today, most people are using the phone to control their audio systems and increasingly it will be security systems and lighting and heating and that’s beginning already.
“I think we’ll be the only people, together, who can really tell that story end-to-end for our customers.”
If Dixons Carphone can leverage the mobile expertise of Carphone Warehouse to truly put the smartphone at the centre of household electronics, we could see a really exciting UK leader in the smart devices and internet of things emerge.
But Dixons Carphone will face fierce competition from some of the world’s biggest and most innovative tech players, which are already moving into this market – and fast.
The highest-profile example is probably Google’s $3.2bn acquisition of Nest in January.
Nest makes smart thermostats and smoke alarms and was Google’s second biggest-ever acquisition, which should give you some idea of how lucrative this emerging tech market is likely to become.
To find out more about the radical movement towards the internet of things and smart devices, read this:
Then let me know what you think @sophiehobson.
Image: JD Hancock/Flickr