While stocks last

Not so “smart” home – 81% not interested

By Alex Wood 3 January 2017
Summary

Buyer beware.

Smart homes: everybody’s talking about them, but nobody’s buying.

We’ve made no secret of our concerns about “smart” devices in the past, and a new report from EY has confirmed what we long suspected, consumers just aren’t interested.

The research took views from 2,500 homes across the UK and found that just 19% were likely to buy or use connected home technology in the next 5 years.

EY says consumers have yet to be convinced and we couldn’t agree more. Lack of consumer awareness and a fragmented market of competing devices that don’t play nicely together were also blamed.

Smart thermostats including Google’s Nest and British Gas’ Hive were cited as the most likely future purchases (26%), followed by smart lighting (23%) and connected cars (18%). Languishing at the bottom of the table were smart watches, fridges and ovens, which have been widely panned by much of the media in 2016.

Reasons to be positive

Despite the lack of enthusiasm, there are still reasons to be positive.

The research showed households are more “interested” in new technology and gadgets than previous years, particularly with younger, more digitally savvy families. These are early days for smart home technology, but already we’ve seen some gems including home security Cocoon and even Pet Camera Petzi.

EY’s advice to smart home product makers: “Put the consumer at the heart of everything they do and provide practical solutions to everyday needs”. We couldn’t have put it better.

Read the full report and analysis from EY.