The smart home automation and monitoring devices will grow to over 770 million globally by 2021. That represents an eleven-fold rise from just 68 million estimated in 2016, according to a new report from Juniper Research.

Called Smart Home Markets: Entertainment, Monitoring, Automation, Health, Metering, Appliances 2017-2021, the study reveals that increasing adoption of platform evangelism and openness to partnerships is boosting third party development of devices, especially in developed markets.

Indeed, North America, Far East & China and West Europe will account for almost 75 per cent of all households adopting the technology in 2021.

Research author Sam Barker remarked: “Successful players will be able to identify critical issues which can be alleviated through the introduction of smart home technology. For example, countries that are faced with ageing populations, such as Japan, will benefit from increasing interplay between automation and digital health services.”

Subscription Services Lose Traction

The author’s say that home automation hardware sales are rapidly outstripping subscription services, such as AT&T’s Digital Life offering. Juniper forecasts that while homes adopting this payment model will increase, a one-off purchase model will see faster growth over the next five years. It found that revenues from hardware sales will exceed subscription revenues for the first time in 2018, reaching $6.2 billion.

With O2 recently launching O2 Home in the UK, the research claimed that this will remain a niche offering, on account of consumers’ inability to on-board devices of their own choice. It also stated that the subscription business model was not fit for such an immature market.

Opportunity in Partnerships & Market-Specific Services

The research found that new entrants and disruptors will intensify input from the developer community while utilising technologies such as machine learning to improve automation platform intelligence will successfully enter the market in 2017.

Juniper predicts that this will not only drive increased ‘smart’ device integration but also generate case-specific applications, which until now have been lacking.

The whitepaper, Smart Homes ~ Getting Smarter 2017, is available to download from the Juniper Research website together with details of the new research and interactive dataset.

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