Around us, there are a multitude of objects and devices that are connected to the Internet of Things. Each of them anticipating, reacting and responding to every possible interaction and accumulating data to provide actionable insights.
Even though the IoT is still in its initial stages of development, there is no doubt that it will become mainstream in a short period of time. Data says that the number of connected devices is expected to exceed 60 billion by 2024. This is an exponential growth and will enable a multitude of modern business use cases and open up major new opportunities for companies.
Consumers today want connectivity, gadgets and services to work, without the hassle of thinking about purchasing or programming them on their own.
And in this scenario, a company which provides the most desirable package of converged services, providing the highest level of convenience, will win the customer.
And companies are aware of this for years now. In this digital age, companies have sought to own more of the customer through converged communications and robust services. However, the success has been limited portrayed by the challenges of legacy architectures and traditional business models.
Parallel to this, there are industry trailblazers and disruptor companies who pile into the pursuit. The arrival of the smart home and the desire for increased convenience has created a revolutionary new market.
The Internet of Things (IoT) and the embedded SIM (eSIM) together are creating an exciting new phase of the connected world. The Laptops, phones, fitness wristbands, televisions, security sensors, appliances, utilities and more are converging into an easy-to-control, totally interconnected environment everywhere around us.
The availability of eSIM has significantly sped up the arrival of the IoT. This further pushes the commoditization of connectivity services and help companies build lucrative markets, depending on their ability to embrace the new.
The time to enter the market today has great benefits in line: large existing customer bases, high levels of trust and ownership of the network infrastructure. These strengths are vital to become the single, preferred digital provider to the smart home.
However, the game will not always be easy. There are disruptors like Amazon and Apple who are nipping at their heels as they try to establish their artificial intelligence (AI) hubs as the sole gateway to all smart home services.
This is the time for companies to do what they must to capture this emerging market.
It is imperative that a company’s core businesses are crucial to generate cash, there is a need to grow an entirely business before the window of opportunity closes. This will require a pivot to new platform business models and internal structures.
There is a significant need to embrace the potential of hyper-personalization and hyperconnectivity that will deliver new revenue streams for companies.
How does the connected home universe look like?
In the connected home plethora, a company should be focused largely on eight different product areas, each of them having its own potential for improving underwriting precision and strengthening customer relationships:
- Security: Market is emerging with increasingly sophisticated and robust alarm systems that detect intrusions and call contact centers or law enforcement authorities. They can also trigger photographs or video footage; these photographs can be viewed remotely by customers on their smartphones, which allows them to determine whether there is real cause for alarm, and can enhance the likelihood of apprehension.
- Energy Management: The controlling systems in individual’s home reduce utilities’ aggregate peak load requirements and can aid customers curb their own energy costs by automatically managing demand to take advantage of peak load pricing.
- Lighting: The lighting be controlled from outside the house and can also be set through apps in order to manage customers’ home and travel schedules
- Water: Smart alarms have the ability to contact homeowners concerning water leaks from tanks or appliances. This way customers can shut off the water supply if necessary; manually or through mobile app. A major boon from IoT application development services.
- Thermostats: With smart and efficient thermostats, they have now moved beyond mere programming and simple buttons. They can track residents’ activities and routines and control temperatures in response to that.
- Weather: The state-of-the-art sensors can now track temperature, wind speed, humidity and vibration in and around the house.
- Appliances: There are smart refrigerators which can alert homeowners about power outages. On the other hand washers and dryers can start or stop automatically and send notifications if any discrepancies arise.
- Smoke and Fire: The modern detectors can not only distinguish steam from smoke but also carry the ability to shut off stoves and other appliances which may be causing the problem.
What should be the next steps for the companies?
Organizations contemplating a move into the connected home market will need to think on multiple planes simultaneously. Companies need to define how customers currently interact with their products and services and track how innovators in the connected home market are enhancing the customer experience. This will help them analyze the regulatory implications of collecting and using huge quantities of data from new sources.
- Partner:- Companies will need an initial ecosystem of partners who will help them deliver the chosen approach. The overall reliability of devices is a major concern and so is the network of incentives which makes the partnership work.
- Refine and Extend:- With new pilots and projects being developed, companies can extend pilot lessons into new projects and continue incorporating new technologies as they move forward.
- Establish:- Be it in partnership with others or by the means of home-grown innovation labs, companies should always experiment with concepts and technologies. This can include analytics and modeling as well as the actual in-home devices themselves. This will help them to test the value proposition of the chosen approach.
The term connected home portrays an enormous opportunity for companies ready to provide IoT based services. In order to convert that entire opportunity into profitable growth, companies must, however, invest carefully in concepts and partnerships which will provide real value for customers while offering real potential gains for themselves.