Most people have a strong interest in the idea of a truly connected home, with health and wellness being among the areas of greatest interest.
This is one of the findings from an Ericsson ConsumerLab study, Connected Homes, which examined attitudes to connected homes, where household services are enabled by internet connectivity.
The study was based on a series of at-home interviews held in Barcelona and Madrid in Spain and San Jose, US, with an addition 5 000 responses from Chile, Russia, Sweden, Spain and the US.
We have busier lifestyles than ever before, and are constantly trying to balance keeping to an ever more demanding work schedule with organizing family life. There are dozens of connected services available to help us save time and preserve the sanctity of home life. But often using these services involves a lot of equipment and different devices, all needing a number of cables and apps. The result is added complexity – which, according to the report, is one of the reasons for the slow uptake of the concept of the truly connected home.
Patrik Hedlund, senior advisor: Consumer Insights at Ericsson ConsumerLab, says: “There was a generally positive response to the concept and benefits of a connected home. But we found that those who actually have a connected home are not the same as those who would benefit most from one.
“The report shows that families may be missing out. Currently, connected home services are largely used by younger single males living alone, while the group that would benefit most are families with young children. Those benefits could include a smarter way to handle household chores and remote home entry for family and friends.
“One barrier at the moment is that some people don’t see the value of these kinds of services,” Hedlund says. For connected homes to be more successful, services must be aligned with people’s needs, and really target the groups that have those needs.
The report also shows that consumers are calling for more simplification and support with regard to connected home services. Four out of 10 of those interviewed would like to see integrated connected home services, while the majority would like to see more support and advice when it comes to using connected home services.
Consumers think there are many potential suppliers of connected home services. However, when asked about their preferred provider in individual connected home categories, people generally favoured market leaders in each category.