Broadband household smart home device ownership rose 7% in 2016, Parks Associates says


Broadband availability may be far from ubiquitous in the United States, but in the homes where a connection is present a new Parks Associates survey revealed that 26% now own a smart home device, up from 19% from the end of 2015.

The research firm, which presented its filings from its upcoming 360 View: Residential Security and Smart Home study at this week’s Consumer Electronics Show (CES), tracks trends related to consumer engagement with IoT solutions combined with strategic insights to drive mainstream adoption of smart home products and services.

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Stuart Sikes, president of Parks Associates, noted that over the past two years smart home device ownership “has more than doubled,” adding that the research firm forecasts that “companies will sell nearly 55 million smart home devices in 2020.”

"With adoption now over one-fourth of all U.S. broadband households, smart home companies are focused on expanding their product footprint, offering new value propositions to consumers, and creating new opportunities to monetize their IoT platforms,” Sikes said in a release.

One of the key trends that service providers like Comcast says it will continue to drive in the smart home device environment is voice control. Comcast added voice control to its smart home platform last summer.

Daniel Herscovici, SVP & GM of Xfinity Home, Comcast, said it expects “voice will be one of the interfaces to help drive sales and innovation in 2017 as natural language and AI move more fully into the smart home market."

Comcast continues to be active on the home automation front.

During this week’s CES event, the cable MSO introduced a cloud-based smart home networking solution that will allow its broadband customers to better control and monitor their residential internet usage. Set to begin rolling out in the first quarter, Digital Home will be a free service to users of Comcast’s XB3 gateway, as well as the DOCSIS 3.1-capable XB6 gateway the company is about to deploy.