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'Consumers more interested in smart home than wearables' - PC Retail

'Consumers more interested in smart home than wearables'

GfK research finds strong international interest in smart home tech
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50 per cent of consumers believe smart home technology will make an impact of their lives, according to new research from GfK.

This is compared to just a third who said the same about wearable tech.

The study, which covered seven countries, asked consumers to choose which of 11 leading-edge technologies – from 3D printing to augmented/virtual reality to Internet of Things – would have an impact on their lives in the next few years.

The results indicate a strong international interest in smart home technology, with just over half (51 per cent) of consumers backing it. This is well ahead of the third (33 per cent) of people who believe wearables will impact their lives, and on a level with mobile payments (54 per cent).

Ranj Dale, GfK’s head of technology research in the UK and manager of the smart home study, commented: “We’re seeing interesting national variations in practically all the areas we looked at – whether it’s the level of appeal that the various smart home areas have in different markets, or the perceived barriers to adoption or the preference for single or multiple suppliers.

“It’s very much a case that each market has its own specific response to, and requirements for, smart home technology. Our research is already helping our clients understand international demand for smart home technology and what specific factors will drive that demand – as well as how to fine tune their approach within each market.”

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New research from CP Consulting recently found the adoption rate of connected home devices in the UK at around 5-7 per cent of households, with a majority of consumers buying online.

"Based on the data we collected and on the composition of the sample, we estimate that the overall adoption rate of Connected Home in the UK is between five per cent and seven per cent of households as of October 2015. This signals that Connected Home devices are progressively being used by a broader segment of the population," commented Carlo Palmieri, MD at CP Consulting.

Across the pond, Amazon has unveiled its Echo device in the US.

Using only your voice, Amazon Echo enables you to play music, control your lights, and ask questions.

"Our customers continue to show interest in smart home products across the many categories we carry. One of our newest products, Amazon Echo, is a smart device that helps make connected home easy and fun," said Jeff Epstein, Merchandising VP at The Home Depot.

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"Staples.com launched Amazon Echo several months ago and the product has been well received by our customers," said Eric Cayton, VP Technology at Staples. "We are excited to continue to work with Amazon to offer Echo in select Staples retail stores and on Staples.com during the holiday season."

"We're thrilled to have Amazon Echo in select Brookstone stores this holiday season," said Brookstone CEO Tom Via. "Our goal is to give customers the opportunity to see and try out the best in new technology and gifts, and Echo is a great fit for them."

Image source: Shutterstock

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