The US smart home industry’s annual revenue is expected to grow from $23.5 million in 2018 to $44 million in 2023. With that unprecedented growth, consumers are expected to see the incredible Internet of Things, aka IoT, applications that will enhance our well-being, add to our quality of life, and help expend less energy.
On our way there, what industry trends can we expect to see this year, and in the future?
We researched industry trends and upcoming products to help you better expect and understand upcoming tech.
1. Making “Dumb” Things “Smart”
A considerable trend is using products to adapt your “dumb” devices and appliances for “smart,” automated use.
One example is smart plugs. These small, relatively inexpensive IoT devices plug into regular electrical outlets, making your coffee maker, fan, lamp, or other device or small appliances accessible and able to be scheduled or voice automated.
Fibaro Smart Implant, a 2019 CES Innovation Award winner works along these same lines. It helps non-connected devices to communicate with Z-wave tech hubs. Look for other similar products on the horizon that can offer the same adaptation service for other IoT platforms and protocols.
Similarly, the upcoming Nexkey Core is a device that can make any lock “smart.” Using all kinds of locks, this device can allow you to unlock your doors via IoT app, rather than a standard key. You don’t need to have a smart lock. You can just use this solution to adapt your existing locks.
2. Environmental Applications
Devices that enhance and control your home’s ecosystem are in demand as well. This trend includes smart thermostats and air conditioners, as well as air quality monitors and filters, meant to keep you comfortable and healthy.
CES honored seven different IoT products affecting and monitoring your indoor environment with 2019 Innovation Awards.
One of these honorees, the battery-powered Wave Plus monitors indoor air quality for things like radon, carbon dioxide, airborne chemicals, humidity, temp, and air pressure.
Similar products also help to save you money by making your air conditioning system smarter. Ambi Climate uses data and machine learning to automatically adjust your HVAC system by understanding how humidity, sunlight, and other factors will affect your room temperature. It can help reduce up to one-third of your system’s energy consumption.
The benefits of regulating energy consumption with smart devices, like thermostats and these climate control devices, are cost savings, plus helping the environment. They can use real-time data to your advantage by keeping you safe from pollutants, maintaining a comfortable room temperature, and saving pennies in your pocket by adjusting your environment in the smartest way possible.
3. Safety Solutions
As elemental as safety is to our well-being, it’s no wonder that the IoT security segment has been a driving force in smart home tech development. IoT security solutions have been pioneering the way through the industry
A significant video surveillance trend is video doorbell cameras like those offered by Ring, Wisenet, August, and Nest. These offer several features, most commonly, video capture and alerts when someone comes to your door.
Cutting edge abilities that we will see implemented in both video doorbells and security cameras are longer battery life and onboard artificial intelligence facial recognition processing with products like the iCreation Facial Recognition Wifi Doorbell and EyecloudCam. These products can detect known humans and strangers, helping to cause fewer false alarms.
Smart locks also loom large in the industry. While not quite the trailblazer that IP cameras have been, smart locks are becoming more and more prevalent. New technologies allow you to control your locks remotely, open with voice activation, and receive notifications about someone opening your doors.
An up and coming product called BrightLock by Havr is the first light-enabled smart lock. It lets you share digital keys, and uses visible light communication to activate or deactivate locks.
4. Smart Home Builder Collaborations
In the coming years, watch for expanded home builder tech collaborations. Amazon recently teamed up with homebuilder Lennar to create smart homes with the company’s technology built-in.
This isn’t just an option or an upgrade. All new homes will have built-in wifi network connectivity and various smart home applications. They will offer a purpose-made home IoT ecosystem.
Along with emerging technologies in residential home building, commercial IoT initiatives and building projects are likely to gain momentum in the near future. In a Forbes Technology Council article, Tom Buiocchi from ServiceChannel suggests that commercial and business spaces will be forthcoming, “IoT provides huge opportunities to manage things like heating, lighting, and energy use far more intelligently than we do today. By integrating smart technologies at the outset, we all can provide a much better experience for residential and commercial customers alike.”
Guest Author: Anne-Marie Hays is interested in the IoT and communications industries. She is passionate about helping consumers save money. She writes for BestCompany.com.