Smart Home Technology to Make International Impact, According to Study

GfK research found smart home technology was the leading innovative technology that international consumers expect to make an impact on their lives in the coming years.

Smart home technology will make an impact on the lives of half of people internationally in the next few years, according to new GfK research.

Consumers were asked to choose which of 11 leading-edge technologies would have an impact on their lives in the coming years. Among the options were 3D printing, augmented/virtual reality, Internet of Things and wearables, and respondents could choose as many as they wished.

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The results indicate a strong international interest in smart home technology, with 51% of consumers backing in. That’s far more than 33% of people who believe wearables will impact their lives. Mobile payments received 54%.

The study covered seven countries — Brazil, U.S., UK, Germany, South Korea, China and Japan — with China and Japan data to come later.

The areas of smart home technology applications that have the greatest appeal are ‘security and control’ (55%) and ‘energy or lighting’ (53%). ‘Entertainment and connectivity’ was third at 48%, while ‘health’ and ‘smart appliances’ tied for fourth at 43% each.

National variations exist in answers to the study, with ‘security and control’ receiving only 38% in the UK but 54% in the U.S. and South Korea.

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“We’re seeing interesting national variations in practically all the area we looked at — whether it’s the level of appeal that the various smart home areas have in different markets, or the perceived barriers to adoption or the preference for single or multiple suppliers,” said Ranj Dale, GfK’s head of technology research in the UK and manager of the smart home study. “It’s very much a case that each market has its own specific response to, and requirement for, smart home technology.

“Our research is already helping our clients understand international demand for smart home technology and what specific factors will drive that demand — as well as how to fine tune their approach within each market.”

Price is the leading issue with smart home technology, followed by privacy concerns over hacking.

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