Remotely turn off devices installed in the home, clean and vacuum, or have freshly brewed coffee ready when the alarm goes off. It has taken time for Smart Homes to succeed. Among other reasons because manufacturers’ ideas, consumer reality and the availability of technological research do not always go hand in hand. Some innovations such as the camera in the refrigerator to see the inside of the fridge from the phone still sound irrelevant. Despite this, the industry currently turns over $537 million dollars per year.
According to research by the British consulting firm Juniper Research, 40% of orders come from China and the Middle East. This is followed by North America and Europe with 22% each. Latin America’s share of global buyers is still irrelevant, although it is expected to reach 4% by 2025. In the Dominican Republic, the government and telecom operators claim to have the technical and human capacities to massify access to 5G internet.
The smart home devices market includes four main segments: modern home automation, which allows remote or automatic control and monitoring of home functions. In addition, there are intuitive metering instruments, for transmitting meter readings and facilitating control of consumption and costs. Finally, there are white line and entertainment elements that provide additional functions and services to the user.
The favorite ‘Smart Homes’ devices
In Juniper Research’s survey, conducted globally in February 2021, washing machines and vacuum cleaners ranked first in popularity. 10% of smart home appliance owners said they own a WiFi-connected washing machine or a robot vacuum cleaner. This was followed by temperature controllers such as air conditioners or heaters linked to a cell phone or cloud platform. Automated coffee makers also stand out.
“Comfort and relief in everyday life are the most important factors in making the decision to join the trend in terms of ‘Smart Homes’,” say the researchers. Fifty-nine percent of respondents validated the statement. On the other hand, when asked how good the devices were in practice, only 38% said they were satisfied with their performance. And 37% said they have been able to save costs for gas, electricity and water consumption.
According to Juniper Reserach, those interested in this type of technology are mostly male, between 26 and 49 years old, and have a net monthly household income of between $2,200 and $4,000. However, the German Statistical Office has objected to that claim, stating that “Smart Homes’ technology is used equally by men and women, and is used by all age groups; however, there are differences depending on the type of application.”
This government agency states that while smart speakers, waterproof and with WiFi and/or Bluetooth connections are particularly common among young people between 16 and 39 years; in the age group of 26 to 49 years there would be a particular interest in the simplification in the preparation of food and beverages. As well as for the management of mobility and energy consumption. It is added that 43% of the target group plan to purchase a new device in the next 12 months. (mov)