Smart home: Opportunities and challenges

May 21, 2018
According to Parks Associates, more than 50% of U.S. broadband households own a smart TV and more than 40% own a streaming media ...

According to Parks Associates, more than 50% of U.S. broadband households own a smart TV and more than 40% own a streaming media player, creating both opportunities and challenges in the smart home and "connected everything" world.

"The rise of voice control enables consumers to control their cameras and sensors and their streaming service through the same interface," said Jennifer Kent, director of Research Quality & Product Development at Parks Associates. "This desire for simplicity drives their choice of connected platforms."

"Consumers have begun to embrace a variety of devices, including smart speakers, smart TVs with voice control, and everything from smart locks to connected thermostats, and even smart refrigerators," said Manar Alazma, vice president of product management, communication service providers, Nuance Communications. "However, in order to truly thrive, the smart home of the future must expand its ease of use through universal interoperability standards. This common language for the smart home will facilitate the open flow of information and seamless handoff between different devices, connected services, and digital assistant platforms in the home. These standards will also provide a pathway for developers to add new features and update services throughout the home with ease."

"Trends such as cord-cutting and consuming media on mobile devices are setting the stage for massive changes, and with those changes new challenges will arise," said Scott Hancock, VP of marketing at Plex. "Content discovery is one of the most pressing issues, and we are seeing apps becoming the new form of 'channels' as we hop in and out of services to find what we want. The technologies available today for smart homes can help to ease the pain of these challenges while the industry works on a better, more unified solution, such as one hub for all media."

"Continuity of the experience across smart home ecosystems and entertainment platforms can play a central role in mainstream adoption of newer use cases," said Arsham Hatameiki, VP of Corporate Product & Strategy at Universal Electronics. "Entertainment systems are widely and frequently used connected computing platforms, already used as the delivery platform for new services."