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The average Australian home will hike from having 17.1 connected devices in 2018 to 37 by 2022, according to Telsyte. Similarly, the unprecedented growth in technology is prompting home buyers to look for homes which feature intelligence that automates their everyday activities. This motivates developers to come up with necessary infrastructure upgrades that allow residents to connect effortlessly. Consequently, the trend of smart homes is continuously on the rise and the IOT has come to a point where price is down; what was once a luxury is now becoming a basic expectation for home buyers. This trend is mainly driven by rapid uptake of smart speakers and increase in internet connectivity for appliances.

Where is growth expected?

Tremendous growth is expected in the categories of energy, security, lifestyle and smart hub devices. Smart speakers, particularly are experiencing a boom in sales whereby 500,000 Australian households own at least one, up from less than 10,000 in 2016. This count is estimated to hit 3 million by 2022. However, security and privacy are impacting consumers’ decision in purchasing smart devices. 41% of Australians are more concerned about cybersecurity than last year, and 61% are worried about their private information being exposed online.

Market leaders

Google Home and Google Home Mini were the initial pacesetters. However, Telsyte is predicting Apple and Amazon’s smart speakers to catch up as their products become more and more available in 2018. They also said that Apple’s loyal user base presents opportunities for 3rd party manufacturers. “Lock-in and ripple effects of Apple’s ecosystem among Australian families are too big for home manufacturers to ignore,” Telsyte’s senior analyst Alvin Lee claimed. Besides, artificial intelligence, which will be used to operate appliances, was said to be “the tipping point for the smart home” because devices would be able to work with one another to achieve a common goal, such as preparing a meal

The future

As connected devices continue to be more affordable and accessible, access to faster broadband is also becoming increasingly easier. Soon, entire homes will be operated by the IoT, whereby everyday activities such as adjusting temperature, turning on the lights, and playing music will be completely automated. Kitchens, in particular, are predicted to be operated through technology that links to smartphones that can monitor cooking time and adjust heat remotely. Smart security is another aspect that will be widely used, with homes installing smart alarms and surveillance systems that are more convenient and easier to operate. The smart home trend will also be influenced by the unstoppable rise in popularity of internet connected devices such as Alexa, Amazon Echo and Google Home.

From sound to temperature to lifestyle amenities, smart homes offer future Australians the ability to automate their lives considerably. Futuristic technology will play an imperative role in Australian households and thereby affect the value of properties. Also, leading technology companies such as LG, and Samsung have already started to add artificial intelligence to some of their household products. All of these luxuries and necessities will ultimately personalise homes and unlock the full potential of living.

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