January 7, 2014
America’s Smart Home Evolution
The smart home was first introduced in science fiction novels, and after years of development, it’s finally here. While we haven’t quite built homes that converse, we do have technology that makes life easier.
Last month the marketing research company MarketsandMarkets released its Americas Smart Homes Market, an analysis and forecast of the smart home industry. The report dives into the current state of the smart home as well as discusses its future. We found the report extremely interesting from a home security standpoint and wanted to share many important tidbits from within.
The Industry’s Growing State
Despite its youth, the home automation industry has experienced rapid growth and popularity. It has a major impact on the user’s convenience as well as adds a touch of luxury. Home security features may not be as luxurious and sexy, but they are a huge component of the smart home. The report states:
“These smart homes also serve the purpose of enhancing security measures, and offering lively and timely entertainment purposes, with clear inclination towards resolving energy scarcity problems; therefore, reducing the carbon emission gases.”
Consumer adoption of the technology is largely due to the many benefits of a smart home. Industry growth is also a result of homeowner’s priorities. Back to the report:
“Home residents often make security and comfort their top priority and, therefore, new developments have been recorded, that have been encouraging people to upgrade from traditional homes to smart homes.”
Cheaper and ever-improving wireless technology is another huge factor for growth, as it has allowed different systems and equipment to communicate with each other. Smart homes are able to automate more tasks more quickly and reliably.
The US Government has had a huge role in advancing the smart home industry. As the report states:
“The Federal American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009 granted $3.4 billion to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to fund their smart grid projects. This funding was very well accepted by the private players, and as a result, around $8 billion were spent on modernizing power grids, customer systems, and equipment. As of September 2013, over $2.2 billion have been invested for installing 15 million smart meters, which are operational.”
Accessibility and Affordability: The Keys to the Future Smart Home
While smart homes are at an all-time high in popularity, there are still factors that need to be met in order to keep the industry growing. According to the report, there are two simple factors that will drive continued growth:
“The possibility of reduction in the prices of smart homes and expected adoption of the technology are the keys to the market’s growth in the future.”
Cheaper prices and new technologies attract stakeholders, who will have a large part in driving the continued technology adoption.
“With the stakeholders becoming active in the market for developing new and improved standards in smart home, this market is expected to grow at a decent pace for many years to come.”
A broader market will also help push down prices, thus increasing availability. At the moment, home automation is seen as a luxury, but increased availability with affordable prices will allow smart homes to increase standards of living for those in need.
“Smart home technology offers the prospect of significant improvements in the living standards of the elderly, infirm, and disabled; who, without automated domestic activities, may otherwise be totally reliant on home care.”
Long Term Impact and Predictions
It’s all speculation, but the future of home automation is bright. The Institute of Electric Efficiency projects that more than 50 percent of US households will have smart meters in their home, indicating that there will be some kind of smart home technology in those homes. What new technology can we expect? Only time will tell.
Were you an early adopter or just starting to explore making your home smart? Share your thoughts in the comments below!