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In Brief

Given its ubiquity in the smartphone world, it’s not surprising that the iPhone has become a kind of centralized remote control for a wide range of devices, from televisions and stereo systems to intelligent lightbulbs and thermostats — and Apple wants to expand on that through a new “Smart Home” program that is going to be launched at WWDC next week, according to a report in the Financial Times. The FT said that Apple will build remote-control and management features for a host of devices including security systems into the iOS platform through partnerships with specific manufacturers, and the company’s retail stores will be a core part of the strategy. The platform could use near-field communications or NFC as the method of control, the newspaper said, since support for the technology is expected to also be part of the company’s new iPhone models.

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