Microsoft wants more than a portion of the living room via the Xbox and the bedroom via the PC or laptop. They seem to want to control the whole house, as proved by the HomeHub feature. This functionality will come with a future Windows 10 update, possibly the one from September.
It’s basically meant to rival Amazon Echo and Google Home, but at the same time it will fight Apple’s HomeKit. HomeHub is intended to be the control center for families, offering shared access to apps, calendars and a new welcome screen in the mix. It supports third party products, like the Philips Hue Lights, Nest thermostat and more. All of those will be controlled straight from a Windows 10 PC with ease.
The screenshots and pics that appeared online show a new welcome screen, featuring an “Always On” digital corkboard, that shows the day’s tasks, plus entries in the calendar, meetings and other events. Voice control via Cortana is of course an option, since this is a Microsoft product after all. Internet searches are also available and among the partners for this initiative we find HP, Lenovo, Insteon, Wink and SmartThings.
A potential release of the features and associated products may happen at the Microsoft May 23rd event in Shanghai. Interestingly if the PC becomes the HomeHub, this would basically cast some shade over the smart speakers with voice assistant…