Smart Home Systems Slow To Gain a Toehold

According to a study by Parks Associates, reported by Brad Russell from an article originally appearing on IoT Agenda, “the IoT space is expanding to provide more targeted service offerings with vertical-specific capabilities. Cloud-connected devices function more like software than hardware, creating changes in product development models.

The development of smart home system platforms has been shaped by a number of factors, says the report. Providers of smart home system hardware and related services either develop a platform on their own or partner with a smart home platform provider that has developed all of the software required for the desired smart home services. 

Historically, the home control system business model resulted in the commoditization of the sensor components to keep system costs down, and thus increase adoption. Recurring monitoring fees generated profit. More recently, some control system platforms are expanding their data analytics and integration capabilities to provide a consumer offering that competes with OEM-focused services provided by smart home device platforms. 

Home control system adoption has benefited from bundling with home security and broadband services, yet the adoption rate of home control systems is still just over 10% of U.S. broadband households. The lack of consumer awareness and understanding of smart home value propositions remains a barrier to entry and growth. Smart home point solutions, such as a smart thermostat or lighting kit from an OEM, are the new consumer entry points for smart home products.

2016 brought the launch of iOS10 with a dedicated “Home” control app and a new SiriKit that opened developer access to Siri voice control, and expanded support for Siri functions such as ride booking and personal payments. Apart from integration with the major personal assistant applications, smart home point solutions will also likely begin to support voice-controls at the application layer by integrating natural language processing into their proprietary control apps.”

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