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Smart-Home Penetration At 32% And Growing

But platform interoperability remains a key concern for consumers.

For a growing number of Americans, there’s no place like smart home.

New research by Parks Associates shows that 32 percent of broadband households in the U.S. already own at least one connected device, while 50 percent intend to buy a smart-home gadget within the next year.

While security has been a major concern for connected-home shoppers, and rightly so, Parks found that platform interoperability is an important consideration for 75 percent of U.S. broadband households planning to purchase a smart-home product.

“Consumers want robust user experiences; they are not going out to buy platforms but products,” noted Parks research analyst Dina Abdelrazik, and “interoperability is a key factor in enabling a working ecosystem of devices.”

Related: Smart-Home Appliances Have Hit The Market — Will Consumers Buy In?

Not surprisingly, Amazon Alexa is top of mind with smart-home shoppers, with 28 percent of U.S. broadband households professing to be “very familiar” with the pervasive personal assistant. Indeed, Alexa leads all surveyed smart-home platforms, Parks said, with Google Home close on its heels.

In fact, about 40 percent of consumers looking to buy a smart-home device consider interoperability with Amazon Echo or Google Home important, and one in seven broadband households own some manner of smart speaker, Echo, Google or otherwise.

On average, about half of personal assistant device and app users are “highly satisfied,” suggesting plenty of room for improvement.

Parks released its findings in advance of its 22nd annual Connections connected-home conference, which runs May 22-24 at the Hyatt Regency San Francisco Airport.