BSRIA research of the UK and global markets for smart solutions such as automated HVAC services will expand at a rapid rate, creating a need for a clear strategy to address data and privacy issues
BSRIA research has found that the value of the UK’s smart homes solutions market, which includes installation, servicing and maintenance work, has grown by more than three times the value recorded five years ago. The association cited demand for HVAC and control products as one of the key drivers behind anticipated growth in the market.
Research from the group said, “Until recently, while growing rapidly, the market still occupied a niche, even in the most developed countries such as the USA, Germany and indeed the UK.”
However, the organisation has said that the current market is forecast to exceeded £400m for the entirety of 2019 – once the full annual data is compiled.
Based on the market’s growth since 2015, BSRIA expects hundreds of millions of homes around the world to have at least four smart systems for individual functions such as heating and ventilation demands, security and overall domestic energy management by the end of the next decade.
The research added, “What is more, each ‘smart home’ is likely to have an average of more than 40 smart devices, which equates to more than 10 billion smart devices worldwide, more than one for each person alive.”
The ubiquity of smartphones was seen as a huge ongoing enabler of smarter technologies in the home, allowing for connection to a number of compatible mobile apps as a form of control for key building systems, as well as applications for monitoring and even automating functions such as heating.
The coming of the tech giants
BSRIA also noted that major technology group such as Apple, Google and Samsung were showing an increasing interest in smart home technologies as a way of building on their expertise with data collection.
The research added, “The successful smart home of the future will be as much as anything about understanding the behaviour and desires of home users and providing attractive solutions, which means exploiting as much information as they can get their hands on both about general behaviour and about the quirks of individual owners.”
Privacy was raised by BSRIA as a vital issue that is set to impact both future innovation in the field of smarter more automated homes as well as overall user take-up.
Analysis from the organisation claimed that consumers so far had proven “quite savvy” in balancing a trade-off between sharing personal data and getting a more customised, cost effective service.
BSRIA added, “How far this will extend into the ultimate privacy of the home remains to be seen and will probably be influenced by factors such as local culture and legal safeguards.”
“In countries like the UK, anyone connected with the residential housing market needs to be aware of the implications of the smart home revolution. Consumers may not necessarily be expecting a fully fitted out and configured smart home, but they are likely to want a home that is flexible enough for them to make it as smart as they want it to be without undue cost or effort.”