Consumers expect smart home tech to have bigger impact than wearables: survey

Half of consumers globally expect technology that makes homes “smarter” to have a greater impact on their day-to-day lives than wearable devices, according to new research.

Market research firm German market research company GfK collected data from consumers in five different countries. It found international interest in smart devices for homes is high with more than 51 per cent of respondents ready to buy into this kind of technology. However, only about a third (33 per cent) of consumers worldwide felt the same way about wearables. The only technology that ranked higher with respondents as far as daily impact was mobile payments, which garnered serious interest from 54 per cent of respondents.

“We’re seeing interesting national variations in practically all the areas we looked at — whether it’s the level of appeal that the various smart home areas have in different markets, or the perceived barriers to adoption or the preference for single or multiple suppliers,” said Ranj Dale, GfK’s head of technology research in the UK and manager of the smart home study, in a statement “It’s very much a case that each market has its own specific response to, and requirements for, smart home technology. Our research is already helping our clients understand international demand for smart home technology and what specific factors will drive that demand – as well as how to fine tune their approach within each market.”

When it comes to smart home devices and apps that pique consumer interest, the category with the greatest appeal is security and control (55 per cent) followed closely by energy and lighting (53 per cent). Health applications and smart appliances came in fourth with 43 per cent of consumers interested.

What’s more interesting is that consumers seemed to want a “one-stop-shop” for all their smart home needs. Almost half (45 per cent) said they’d prefer the simplicity of a single vendor to provide all their home-centric technology, with only 29 per cent expressing comfort with purchasing from a range of vendors.

The study compiled responses from more than 7,000 consumers aged 16 and above who were residents of the U.S., Brazil, the United Kingdom, Germany and South Korea.

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Lindsey Peacock
Lindsey Peacock
Lindsey Peacock is a freelance writer, editor and American expat based in Toronto. This proud Atlanta native has written for a variety of news and business publications across North America, including Business in Vancouver, BCBusiness magazine, Fort McMurray Today and The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Blogging, sweet tea and black-and-white movies are a few of her favourite things.

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