Cost savings, peace of mind and security are key factors driving growth
89% of people want to connect all their devices in the future
THE Internet of Things (IoT) is transforming family life through the wireless connection of devices in the home, such as smart meters and security systems, helping to save money and increase peace of mind, according to new research issued today by the GSM Association (GSMA).
The report, The Impact of the Internet of Things: The Connected Home, was developed by KRC Research and GSMA Intelligence, and highlights that approximately one in four people in Germany, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States already own a connected device such as a smart meter (28%), security system (23%), lighting system (23%), or health monitor (23%).
This underscores the growing impact of wireless connectivity and the IoT on the lives of consumers, GSMA said in a statement.
The research also indicates that the uptake of connected devices is set to grow rapidly over the coming years, with 89% of all respondents confirming that they would like all of their household devices to be seamlessly connected together in the future.
According to the report, consumers have a strong interest in connecting virtually everything in their homes including security systems, thermostats, smart meters, lighting and cars, as well as health monitors, washing machines, smart watches, activity trackers, ovens, refrigerators and elderly monitors.
“Multiple machines, devices and appliances are being connected to the Internet through numerous networks and are providing consumers and businesses with innovative new services,” said GSMA chief technology officer Alex Sinclair.
“The IoT may sound like a futuristic buzz term, but it is already here and improving our lives.
“This report confirms that although the market is still relatively nascent, there is huge demand for these services in the connected home; however, seamless interaction of these devices and services is essential, making collaboration and interoperability between companies from different sectors more critical than ever,” he added.
The survey confirmed that the opportunity to save money was the most compelling benefit of purchasing connected devices for the home to both owners and non-owners.
For example, 70% of all respondents believed that this was the most important aspect of owning a connected energy system.
The survey found strong consumer interest in the connected car, with respondents seeing the benefits of saving money on fuel through the use of real-time traffic updates, as well as insurance premiums via real-time usage monitoring.
Eighty-six percent of non-owners would consider purchasing a connected car for their next vehicle if it would save them 30% on their monthly insurance costs.
Time savings are also seen to be a significant benefit of driving a connected car, with owners saving upwards of six hours of travel time each month by avoiding congestion with real-time traffic updates.
Peace of mind and protection against theft or hazards were also amongst the most important benefits of owning a smart security system according to owners, with nearly all confirming that their sense of security had increased since installing it.
Connected health and fitness
The survey also noted the growing influence of wearable fitness devices for improving fitness performance, with nearly 25% of non-owners being likely to consider purchasing a connected fitness device if it would increase the number of calories they burn on a monthly basis by 10%.
Connected healthcare devices were also well received by consumers with 83% of owners reporting that their sense of well-being had improved and that their use provided peace of mind and helped with lifestyle improvements.
Additionally, the ability to remotely monitor a close family member with a chronic illness, for example, to make sure they have taken their daily medicine with a smart healthcare device, also received an overwhelming positive response with 86% cent of non-owners interested in this feature.
Connected Living at MWC 2015
The GSMA Connected Living programme, which is present at the ongoing Mobile World Congress 2015 in Barcelona, is an initiative to help operators add value and accelerate the delivery of new connected devices and services in the machine-to-machine (M2M) market.
This is to be achieved by industry collaboration, appropriate regulation, optimising networks as well as developing key enablers to support the growth of M2M in the immediate future and the IoT in the longer term, GSMA said.
To download a PDF copy of The Impact of the Internet of Things: The Connected Home report, click here.
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