Smart-home device maker Wyze raises $110M as it plans to inject AI heavily into camera products

The Wyze Cam Outdoor from Wyze Labs. (Wyze photo)

Smart home device maker Wyze Labs raised $ 110 million in new funds on Friday, according to GeekWire, reflecting the Kirkland, Washington, U.S.-based company’s plans to improve its existing line of products and bring even more to market bring forward.

Wyze has launched more than 30 products, including everything from security cameras to robotic vacuums to thermostats, and many of those products hit the market over the last year or so during a flurry.

“We are doubling down and investing heavily to incorporate world-class artificial intelligence into our camera products,” Wyze co-founder and chief marketing officer Dave Crosby told GeekWire. “It was only last year that our AI team integrated person recognition, vehicle recognition, parcel recognition and pet recognition into our cameras.

“Right now we have AI features in the works that we really believe will be game-changing for any camera, let alone one that costs less than $ 36,” said Crosby of the signature Wyze Cam- Company surveillance camera.

Wyze also plans to use the money to improve internal processes like customer service and shipping, according to Crosby.

Wyze was founded in 2017 by a trio of Amazon veterans and expanded well beyond this initial low-cost security camera towards the hoped-for mass adoption of smart homes. Since then, it has undercut higher-priced competitors. It launched a smart floor lamp in April; a smartwatch for $ 19.99 last December; a smart sprinkler control system last November; an intelligent vacuum just before it; and an outdoor camera last summer.

The Series B round was led by Marcy Venture Partners, co-founded by hip-hop star Jay-Z, Larry Marcus, and Jay Brown. The company has already invested in companies like Hipcamp, Hungry, Wheels, and Versed, and was part of a $ 15 million Wyze round last summer. American Family Ventures, which had previously sponsored Wyze, and others also invested.

Wyze has raised $ 146 million in funding to date and employs approximately 300 people.

In July, the company sued Chinese consumer electronics giant Xiaomi and Roborock robotic vacuum cleaner in federal court in Seattle to invalidate their 2019 patent for “an autonomous cleaning device.” The Amazon listing for Wyze’s own vacuum robot is at stake.

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