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Survey shows smart home devices still in early adopter phase

By Mike Wheatley | March 13, 2017
  • Owners of “smart homes” are officially ahead of the curve. A new survey by respected technology analyst firm Gartner Inc. of almost 10,000 homeowners in Australia, the U.S. and the U.K. shows smart home technologies are still in the early adopter phase worldwide.

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    Currently, only around ten percent of homes in those countries have connected home solutions, which Gartner defines as “devices and services that are connected to one another and to the Internet that can automatically respond to preset rules, be remotely accessed and managed by mobile apps or a browser, and send alerts or messages to users.”

    The analyst firm said that while homeowners in the developed world are embracing connected home solutions, it’s still early days. As such, the responsibility is on providers to push beyond this early adopted usage, Gartner said.

    "If they are to successfully widen the appeal of the connected home, providers will need to identify what will really motivate current users to inspire additional purchases,” said Amanda Sabia, principal research analyst at Gartner.

    The most popular connected home solutions are security alarm systems, which have an adoption rate of 18 percent in new homes. Other devices and systems gaining popularity include home monitoring systems (11 percent adoption rate), health and wellness management (11 percent), home automation (9 percent) and energy management (9 percent). Gartner said that adoption rates around five to six percent higher in the U.S., which is where smart home devices were first marketed.

    "Messaging needs to be focused on the real value proposition that the complete connected home ecosystem provides, encompassing devices, service, and experience," says Jessica Ekholm, research director at Gartner. "The emphasis needs to be on how the connected home can helps solve daily tasks rather than just being a novelty collection of devices and apps.”

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