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Get to know today's smart homes and their users

September 17, 2021

Get to know today's smart homes and their users

They're not just for "techies" anymore. Learn how smart home systems save energy, boost security, and impact lives.

Smart homes are more popular than ever, with many homeowners choosing to incorporate smart devices into their living spaces. As the technology evolves to be more affordable, intuitive, and DIY-friendly, more age groups and demographics have discovered the benefits of smart homes.

Let's look at the smart home trends that should be on retailers' radars.

Consumers seek intra-system compatibility

Smart home technology can simplify people's lives by putting control of household systems at their fingertips. But, if there are too many disparate systems and apps to manage, it can have the opposite effect.

Consumers are increasingly looking for platforms that do more -- for example, a single brand that offers a range of compatible devices and functions all controlled from one app. Multi-functional products (like the HALO Home Voice downlight, a combination of light and speaker) also allow homeowners to declutter their homes.

Another big plus? If those systems also "play nice" with popular third-party services like Amazon Alexa or Google Home. More tech-savvy smart home enthusiasts might even look for features like IFTTT integration, where they can allow connected devices to communicate with countless other devices and services and customize to their hearts' content.

Touchless experiences: the new norm

While smart home apps revolutionized the way homeowners controlled their home lighting, smart TVs, and other systems, more are looking to go hands-free. Voice-controlled lighting and devices are more in demand than ever.

If you're an Amazon Prime user, you might also be familiar with its Dash Replenishment service; this allows connected devices like washing machines, coffee makers, and pet food dispensers to automatically reorder supplies when they run low. This is just one example of how the Internet of Things (IoT) has been making its way into people's homes and making everyday tasks (like shopping) more hands-off—much to the retailer's benefit.

The power of zoning

Smart lighting and smart home technology can help make spaces more functional for everyday use. One way homeowners can accomplish this is by setting up custom zones, a functionality that's increasingly available in smart home devices and apps.

For example, smart lighting systems can be set up in high-traffic areas of your home (e.g., the kitchen) so that lights automatically turn on when it's time for morning coffee. Or, all of the outdoor lights can be grouped and programmed together, which is particularly beneficial for large properties.

Zoning not only allows homeowners to tailor lighting and other systems according to their schedules and habits, but to save energy and boost home security.

Smart homes, health tech & the elderly

As older adults live longer, healthier lives, they often want more from their homes. Those who resisted new technologies had to adapt quickly during COVID-19, when technology was the best way to connect with family and friends or visit their doctor. Suffice to say that smart homes are no longer just for tech-savvy Millennials; it's increasingly popular among seniors.

Facilities in the senior living industry increasingly incorporate wearable devices, smart speakers, AI assistants, and other technologies that enable self-reliance and better living experiences for older adults.

Privacy remains a concern

While smart devices certainly present an opportunity for enhanced marketing through better data collection and personalization, retailers and manufacturers should approach that opportunity with caution. Many consumers are concerned about surveillance and privacy, and justifiably skeptical about the devices they invite into their homes.

Remember in 2017, when the makers of Roomba drew criticism for reportedly collecting and selling data about people's home layouts? That was just one example of how data collection could quickly backfire, and why manufacturers and consumers should always be transparent about how consumer data is collected and used (and allow them to opt-out).

The perfect smart home 'starter kit'? HALO Home lighting.

Simple, smart, and secure, HALO Home offers a range of lights, controls, accessories,
and integrations that make smart home setup a breeze.