At its F8 developer conference today, Facebook announced that it's rolling out a new software development kit for Parse, a company it acquired in 2013 that provides a cloud backend for app developers. The goal is to make it easy for apps built on Parse to share data with connected devices like smart locks and lightbulbs.
Facebook likely hopes that this will make it easy for data to flow into the social network, so you can easily get notified in your news feed or on Messenger when your garage door opens or your connected flower pot is running out of water.
A number of companies working on the internet of things already use Parse. As the company noted in a blog post there is, "Chamberlain, who makes a line of smart garage door openers that interact with our REST API; Milestone Sports, who make the wearable running tracker Milestone Pod; and Roost, who make smart batteries for smoke detectors. From these conversations, we decided we could go one step further."
This effort to position Parse as a back end that will work with the internet of things is similar to what Apple is doing with HomeKit and Google attempted with Android @Home, now replaced by a more full-fledged push centered around Nest. As the number of connected devices in our lives explode, these tech giants want to make sure they can leverage that river of data and integrate it into the software services we use daily.