Connected Homes Are a Haven for Early Adopters

The Internet of Things is growing by leaps and bounds, but vendors have some work to do before it spreads into the average household.

Technology vendors need to get to work before average consumers welcome the Internet of Things (IoT) into their homes, suggests a recent study from Gartner.

Taking the pulse of the connected home solutions market, the research firm polled 10,000 people in the U.S., the U.K. and Australia. Gartner's analysts found that, at least for now, early adopters are clearly in charge.

Only 10 percent of respondents said they currently had connected home solutions. Gartner defines connected home solutions as "a set of devices and services that are connected to each other and to the internet and can automatically respond to preset rules, be remotely accessed and managed by mobile apps or a browser, and send alerts or messages to the user(s)."

It's the intersection of IoT and the household technology market, essentially. Legacy solutions, like security alarms (18 percent) are more prevalent than more modern connected home solutions like monitoring (11 percent) or automation and energy management (9 percent).

For vendors, these figures add up to some extra time spent at the drawing board.

"Although households in the developed world are beginning to embrace connected home solutions, providers must push beyond early adopter use," said Gartner principal research analyst Amanda Sabia, in a statement. "If they are to successfully widen the appeal of the connected home, providers will need to identify what will really motivates current users to inspire additional purchases."

Part of the problem is that folks are generally OK with managing their appliance settings manually, whether it means flipping a light switch or cranking up the heat with an old-school dial.

Three-quarters of those surveyed said they were happy to have a hand in their lighting controls and temperature settings. Fifty-eight percent said they prefer standalone devices that operate independently.

According to an earlier forecast from Gartner, enterprises are currently driving demand for IoT solutions. The analyst group predicts that businesses will snap up $964 billion worth of IoT devices in 2017 versus $725 billion in consumer spending.

By 2020, the tables will turn, with consumers spending nearly $1.5 trillion on IoT endpoints, compared to just over $1.4 trillion on the business side, as they flock to smart home devices, smart TVs and connected car devices. Collectively, the market is expected to generate a whopping $2.9 trillion in revenue in 2020.

Pedro Hernandez is a contributing editor at Datamation. Follow him on Twitter @ecoINSITE.




Tags: internet of things, IoT, Connected Environment


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