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Target looks to promote home automation with The Target Open House and Mission Control

After a seven-week renovation Target has announced the relaunch of the Target Open House. The Target Open House is an Internet of Things store that provides guests with hands-on interactions with new connected device products and services, along with giving entrepreneurs a place to commune and learn. It had first opened in July 2015 with more than 150,00 guests, entrepreneurs and chief product officers from more than 75 different companies having visited the space. The idea behind the Target Open House expose customers to connected home technology and to provide a place for entrepreneurs to exhibit their wares.

The Target Open House is an interactive 3,500 square foot space located in San Francisco’s Metreon shopping center. The space is meant to demonstrate how smart home gadgets can work together for consumers, while also providing a space for the products to be showcased while entrepreneurs learn from customer responses.

"Our latest iteration of the space, brought to life with the help of our partners from our in-house creative team, features a number of exciting new elements and products I’m thrilled to share," said Gene Han, vice president of Consumer Internet of Things (IoT) and head of Target’s innovation office. New changes to the Target Open House include the Garage Space a place to showcase or launch new products on a retail shelf, while also obtaining important feedback and providing direct visibility to Target buyers. Han explains,

“We’re making it easier for startups to get their products in front of thousands of guests earlier, before they’re even available for sale.”

Additionally Target is debuting a new tool, Mission Control, a software that helps startups submit products for display at Target Open House. It has a real-time dashboard for startups to see guest interactions, access feedback and understand the traffic and sales of their products.

The event space has also been updated to accommodate larger gathering and has enhanced feedback and analytics for vendors, along with a new arrangement of rooms and experiences to the signature house inside the store space. “Putting a house in the space, we felt, was the most relatable and welcoming way to introduce these products,” says Todd Waterbury, Target’s chief creative officer. “What we’re trying to do is humanize and personalize the benefits of these products, as well as show them working in concert. It’s really about relevant storytelling and creating a destination for engagement and discovery.”

Home automation has been growing and creating automatic and electronic devices that allow one to control household features, activities and appliances. Garnet, an American information technology research firm, predicts by 2022 that a typical home could contain as many as 500 smart devices, and the 2015 iControl Networks State of the Smart Home Report, found that 50 percent of North Americans surveyed said they planned to purchase at least one smart home device in the next year. The Target Open House update serves as one of many opportunities for consumers to join in the coming revolution for the quest to connect everything in the home on a network.


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