IHS weighs in on CES 2017 trends

Smart home evolves, presents more use cases
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Wednesday, February 1, 2017

LAS VEGAS—At this year’s Consumer Electronics Show, the smart home became more refined, according to IHS, presenting more use cases to dealers and consumers.

Blake Kozak, IHS’ principal analyst for smart home and security technology, told Security Systems News that this year’s CES built off of previous years’ announcements and technologies. “Maybe last year, and the year before, you’d see these providers coming out with thermostats and things like that. … But now, you’re seeing those thermostats being integrated into more platforms and there’s more use cases.”

One innovation Kozak pointed out was enhanced light bulbs with infrared light to assist outdoor cameras, giving users a clear idea of where to incorporate the technology and why.

Kozak saw more voice integrations at CES 2017. The smart home “certainly is becoming more approachable,” Kozak said. “I think voice is really playing a key role in that, and [voice controls are] a gateway to wider adoption.”

A consumer may buy a product like Amazon Echo for convenience features, he said, but then start purchasing smart home products such as light switches to go with that offering.

“For the U.S. Market, I think we’re going to see a lot more video,” Kozak predicted. He said that consumers are becoming savvier on the topic of data and how their data is being used, which helps the market.

Eventually, wider camera adoption could begin to cannibalize the market for other sensors, Kozak noted. “One camera could potentially see an entire room, and maybe that room has three windows and two doors,” he said, which would replace multiple contact or glass-break sensors.

Kozak was positive on the future of home automation. “I think that the consumer’s going to be more immersed in the smart home in 2017 and 2018 and that’s going to help the consumer better understand the values of the connected home.”

Kozak predicted that a combined approach to the market, including a mix of professionally installed devices and DIY-installed devices, will become more prevalent in the future.

CES also exhibited drone and robot technologies, Kozak pointed out. “Right now we’re trying to get consumers to really understand the value of having connected light bulbs and thermostats and these other types of connected devices … trying to convince somebody that they need to invest in a robot is a bit of a leap at the moment.”