Parks Associates - Purchase Channel for Smart Home Devices

International IoT market research firm Parks Associates recently announced the publication of its annual flagship study, Global Connected Living Outlook 2017: Building on the IoTwhich provides a comprehensive overview of the key markets serving consumers’ connected lifestyles. This report identifies major trends in all connected consumer service categories, including broadband services, smart home solutions, connected CE, digital content and entertainment, residential security, connected health and wellness, and connected cars.

The firm’s consumer research has detailed a shift in smart home purchase behaviors in the past year as retail is now the most common purchase channel for smart home products. Among current smart home owners, 26% purchased their device from a retailer such as Home Depot, Walmart, or Sears. As more products are purchased standalone and then brought into a connected home, the risk of a fragmented consumer IoT experiences increases.

“There are increased opportunities across the consumer entertainment, technology, mobility, and connected home markets,” said Dina Abdelrazik, Research Analyst, Parks Associates. “New use cases are emerging as access to consumer data is creating additional value, new methods of personalization, and the possibility of an enhanced user experience (UX). However, as consumers become more connected, their digital lives in many ways become more complicated, and solving this potentially fragmented consumer experience, addressing privacy concerns, and crossing traditionally separate boundaries will be the dominant challenges for companies in 2017 and 2018.”

Key research from the report includes:

  • Global sales of wearables will grow from 105 million units in 2016 to 241 million units in 2021, with sales of smart watches exceeding 129 million in 2021.
  • Less than 13% of consumers have experienced VR.
  • Standalone device sales have increased in every connected device segment between 2014 and 2016.
  • Streaming media player sales in North America will exceed 14 million units in 2020.
  • The number of pay-TV households in North America will fall below 109 million by the end of 2021.
  • Cord nevers make up a small but growing percentage of consumers at 5% of U.S. broadband households.
  • Cord cutters and cord shavers account for a significant percentage of new OTT subscribers.

“Currently 19% of smart watch users want to use this device to lock/unlock their car, so we are starting to see consumer interest in connecting the smart devices in their home, and on their person, to the smart systems in their car,” said Jennifer Kent, Director, Research Quality & Product Development, Parks Associates.

“OTT services like Netflix and Amazon and market developments  like Whisker Labs’ energy monitoring innovations, Vivint’s AI-driven Sky Assistant, and Comcast Xfinity’s imminent relaunch of EcoSaver are giving consumers more options, increased personalization, and enhanced value across the full spectrum of IoT experiences,” Abdelrazik said. “Following early disruptions, many players are now rising to the challenge to create competitive solutions that better accommodate the needs of the connected consumer.”