Smart home: what is and benefits in the daily life of its inhabitants

The concept of a Smart Home, although not new, is only recently being discussed more prominently. New technologies and price drops have opened up the market to more customers. Furthermore, Smart Homes no longer have to be built from the ground up, rather incorporated into existing homes and apartments. Searches for Smart Home has shown a growing trend in the past 5 years, and will likely continue to grow in popularity. The numerous benefits that Smart Home can bring, almost endless considering future technologies, make the product range an attractive market to tap into.


What is a Smart Home?

Home automation is not a new idea, for example, a 1950 edition of “Popular Mechanics” magazine featured an article about “Push-Button Manor”. Even further back, the idea of the “Home of Tomorrow” was introduced in the 1933 World Fair in Chicago. Of course, the idea of the Smart Home has developed since then. Today, when people consider the idea of Smart Home they usually think of home and technologies controlled via the internet and wireless technologies.

What advantages do Smart Homes Offer?

The advantages already offered by Smart Home technologies are numerous: energy saving (leading to costs savings), comfort and security through motion sensor lighting and cameras, time saving through completing everyday chores such as vacuuming and mowing the lawn. However, a more essential and impactful role of Smart Homes is assisting people with disabilities. The use of smart lighting or Smart doorbells can assist in overcoming obstacles that some people might encounter in day-to-day life.


The Smart Home Market

Considering the advantages already offered, as well as possible solutions offered in the future, the Smart Home market is likely to see growth in the coming years. The market was valued at about $24 billion in 2016, and is expected to grow as more people begin to adopt Smart Home technology to the tune of about $53.5 billion by 2022. As people spent more time at home in the last year due to Covid-19, and also invested more in their homes, we might see this prediction hit sooner than expected. Moreover, as digital natives reach adulthood and their prime spending years, we are likely to see an increase in Smart Home systems adoption, coinciding with a greater investment in technology and technology solutions. If we are to say the Smart Home market saw a boom in the last decade, we can predict that this boom will grow going forward.

There are already a number of brands tapping into the Smart Home market. Some well-known brands, for example Ring (the market leader in the USA) were only founded recently (Ring itself in 2012) and have gone on to show immense value. Ring was bought out by Amazon in early 2018 for over $1 billion! The acquisition ties into the online giants Smart Home Strategy, with the likes of Alexa acting as the Smart Home hub. In the home improvement sector Hornbach have established their own Smart Home ecosystem, offering Smart Home starter packs and advice through their website, as well as a growing number of Smart Home partnerships. Further to this, some suppliers, for example Bosch, sell complete packages to tie into security, energy use etc.

Reasons the smart home market will grow

The new boom in Smart Home products coincides with a more accessible price range and Smart Home technologies that can be acquired with small investment. For example, smart lighting and illumination seems to be one of the most common categories, perhaps due to the relatively small investment required. Another category that is trending recently, especially in the USA, are Smart doorbells, which act to increase security and also help confirming delivery of online orders, as well as ward off potential “porch pirates”. Energy saving installation, such as Smart heating systems, require a bit more investment, but lead to long term savings, and might see growth as environmental awareness increases.

There is a lot of buzz around Smart Home systems, with a growing market ready to be tapped into, as well as endless opportunities presented to integrate Smart Home into currents homes and new builds. As new digital generations reach their prime spending years, and invest in apartments or homes, this market will see an increase in size. Importantly, large investments are no longer required to establish Smart Homes, even small changes can be made progressively to facilitate day-to-day living.  As demonstrated, a number of brands have already developed their own Smart Home systems, and with partnerships and collaboration these ecosystems will grow and offer valuable and efficient solutions to customers.  

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