techUK launches 3rd annual 'State of the Connected Home' report on consumer adoption of smart tech

26 June 2019

techUK State of Connected Home report 2019

The report shows consumers are beginning to find value in the overall smart & connected home ecosystem, suggesting the industry is at a tipping point – but cost remains a barrier to uptake of connected home products.

Key findings in the report include:
 
Knowledge & recognition
•  In  2019, a record 8 out of 10 consumers know something about the
'smart home', the highest awareness of the concept to date
•  Confidence and brand recognition is now stronger among consumers

Ownership & appeal
•  All of the top categories of products have grown
•  The most owned products are – 46% smart TVs; 22% smart
speakers; 19% smart fitness & activity trackers; smart detectors for smoke & gas leaks; smart thermostats; and smart washing machines
•  Smart domestic appliances have been the fastest growing category, in terms of appeal

Drivers & barriers
•  Top drivers – confidence; interoperability; and comfort
•  Top barriers – cost; privacy; and knowledge

Control & willingness to pay
•  When  additional  benefits  are  recognised,  52%  of  consumers  are willing to pay more for a smart, rather than a non-smart product, when it comes down to home security
•  With  regards  to  health,  consumers  are  willing  to  pay  a  premium  for monitoring devices
•  Smartphones are the number one means of controlling other smart devices

techUK has today launched its third annual report, The State of the Connected Home. With polling of 1,000 UK consumers, the report highlights how market appeal, consumer understanding and ownership has shifted since 2018, as well as the constraints on uptake.

For the first time, the survey covered consumers’ drivers for purchase and further explores the main barrier highlighted over the last three years – cost. Furthermore, it contains analysis around what types of devices consumers use to control their environment and what role the ecosystems play in impacting their choices. The report also covers how techUK is working with industry and Government to tackle some of these challenges. It also makes recommendations to encourage widespread adoption.

Knowledge & recognition
The report shows that consumers were more knowledgeable about smart homes
than in the previous two years, with more than a third of consumers feeling like they know a lot/a fair amount about smart home technology. Interestingly, as knowledge increases overall, appeal is slightly lower than in 2018, with the exception being for smart appliances.

Ownership & appeal
The slight increase in appeal of smart appliances might be connected to the modest growth in ownership of smart appliances – where the survey found owners are extremely positive.

Ownership has increased in each of the top 10 product categories for all age groups in comparison to 2018. Three out of five consumers now own at least one smart home device, with the 25 to 44 age group owning the most connected home products.

Barriers & adoption of connected home devices
Top drivers for adoption for 2019 are confidence that consumers can use new smart home devices. They do expect some level of interoperability, and essentially wish them to provide comfort.

The top barriers for 2019 remain consistent with other years. Cost, concerns about privacy and security, and lack of knowledge are the primary barriers to take up.

Interaction with smart devices & premium services
The research also explored if consumers are willing to pay more, once they have realised the benefits of “smart”. 52% of people would pay more for a smart product which improves their home security; and 12% of people would pay a premium for a smart product that accurately monitors their health.

The report also showed that 64% of owners control their smart energy and  lighting devices via their smartphone, while 32% use a smart speaker.

Commenting on the report, Teodora Kaneva, Programme  Manager, SmarterUK, techUK, said: “The connected home market is developing rapidly. This is primarily  driven by innovation in the industry. We see a huge appetite for smart home technology to, not only provide comfort and safety, but also to reduce household bills and allow consumers to interact with the ecosystem. The increase in smart home device usage will also allow the energy, automobile, and connectivity providers to further innovate and work with Government to tackle key environmental challenges.”

Jay Chinnadorai, Chairman of the Connected Home Working Group, Senior Board Advisor – Informetis: “It has been fascinating to see the evolution of the Connected Home market over the last three years – the period over which we have been publishing this report – and see some significant and some more subtle  changes. We are just beginning to see the value of the ecosystem being extracted by the consumer. This is not unrelated to the dramatic growth of smart speakers – a category which did not exist back in 2016. We are also delighted that techUK, in partnership with GfK, has been able to track and inform the industry every year with this report.”

Trevor Godman, Key Account Director, GfK: “Smart speakers have been the real star of the connected home market over the past couple of years, but we are seeing steady growth in sales across a variety of other products. Our research also shows plenty of appetite for the benefits that smart products can bring – improved home security, convenience in looking after the home and so on. It’s slightly less clear that consumers really understand the benefits those products can deliver. The challenge for industry is to crystalise the advantages of connected products, rather than relying solely on calling them “smart”. This will help as the connected home becomes increasingly mass market.”

Download the full report: https://portal.techuk.org/uploaded-images/The%20State%20of%20the%20Connected%20Home_Edition3_Jun19.pdf

Find out more
State of the Connected Home Report Edition 3 2019 insights:
www.techuk.org/insights/reports/item/15638-the-state-of-the-connected-home-report-edition-3
techUK Connected Home hub: www.techuk.org/connected-home


About techUK
techUK represents the companies and technologies that are defining today the world that we will live in tomorrow. Over 900 companies are members of techUK, collectively employing more than 700,000 people. These companies range from leading  FTSE  100  companies  to  new  innovative  start-ups.  The  majority  of  our members are small and medium sized businesses.
techUK is committed to helping its members grow, by:
•  Developing markets
•  Developing relationships and networks
•  Reducing business costs
•  Reducing business risks

Further details on the SmarterUK programme can be found at: www.techuk.org/focus/programmes/smarter-uk


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