3,200 Connected Home Devices At Best Buy; Smart Fridge, Washer Lag Market

Any consumers who go shopping specifically for a smart, connected home device this holiday season are going to face a bewildering assortment.

The number of products ranging from smart appliances and home control systems to smart security systems and streaming media devices is now in the thousands at Best Buy alone, according to a new study.

The study on consumer attitudes toward smart appliances is based on a nationally representative sample of 1,000 consumers each in the U.S., U.K., France and Germany, conducted by Futuresource Consulting.

Researchers counted more than 3,000 connected home devices being sold at Best Buy. The tally provides a general idea of the largest and smallest categories. Here’s how many smart products are offered by the store:

  • 2,250 – Smart media and entertainment, like smart TVs and streaming media players
  • 457 – Security and surveillance, such as baby monitors and security cameras
  • 222 – Home control, including smart thermostats and voice control systems
  • 139 – Networking and wireless, such as home Wi-Fi systems and routers
  • 137 – Smart appliances, such as washing machines and kitchen appliances

Almost a quarter (22%) of homes already use some type of smart home service, with security systems leading the way, according to the study.

While pricing may hinder a purchase, saving money does not seem to be a driving force among benefits seen.

Half (50%) of consumers say the main benefit of smart services is making them feel more secure and a third (33%) say to help them identify problems in advance. The lowest benefit (14%) is in reducing energy costs.

The study also identified a potentially large segment of market opportunity, in larger smart home appliances.

The overall penetration of smart refrigeration and washing machines is in the early stages in the U.S., with 15% of consumers owning one of those smart appliances, with 5% of them being connected.

The study segmented smart appliances into two categories, one as connected devices, such as washing machines and refrigerators that can be remotely monitored or controlled and the other as non-connected smart devices, such as washing machines with ‘smart dosing’ but with no wireless connectivity.

While only a small percentage consumers own a smart washer or refrigerator, almost half (49%) said their next one is likely to be one.

Most of those who already have a smart appliance can’t imagine buying a non-smart appliance in the future, according to the study.

It’s only a matter of time for the others.

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