Port Washington, N.Y. — More affordable home-automation options and the ability to use smartphones and tablets to control home systems are opening up the market “to younger, middle-class consumers who not only own, but rent as well,” The NPD Group said.
Growing adoption of smartphones and tablets has helped drive up interest and awareness of home-automation products and services because the mobile devices act as home-system remote controls, NPD said.
Home-automation products “haven’t gained widespread adoption yet,” but interest is building, NPD said. Among all consumers, 48 percent said they were either “extremely or somewhat interested” in purchasing home-automation products, NPD found in a recent consumer survey. Among smartphone and tablet owners, the number hits 62 percent.
The demographics of people owning or interested in owning home-automation systems is broadening, NPD also found. A total of 37 percent of home-automation product owners have a household income of less than $75,000, and one-fifth of consumers who own home-automation products rent their primary residence. In contrast, “five years ago, the installation and use of home-automation systems required expensive equipment and professional installations appealing to mostly upper-income home owners,” said NPD executive director Ben Arnold.
“Now with more affordable options and the ability to access the interfaces from anywhere at any time, we see a whole new market opening up to younger, middle-class consumers who not only own, but rent as well.”
Ownership of mobile devices is contributing to growing awareness of home-automation products that can be monitored and control inside the house and remotely, NPD also said. Eighty-eight percent of mobile device owners are aware of home-automation devices compared with just 78 percent of consumers overall, NPD found in its survey. Of those who own a network-connected home-automation product, 81 percent own a smartphone or tablet.
The results were based on an online survey of 2,200 adults in December 2013.