Survey Reveals Consumer Attitudes Regarding IoT Devices

ADT teamed with technology publications including Digital Trends, CNET and Engadget to survey how consumers feel about smart technology and, more specifically, smart homes. The results are complex but pointed towards a growing interest in and support of Internet of Things (IoT) devices. That aligns with other evidence that the IoT market is expected to also grow; by 2023, the smart home market worldwide is predicted to reach $150+ billion. The U.S. leads, with 45+ million smart devices already installed in homes.

CEPro reports that “recent research suggests that consumers are eager for smart home security but leery of devices that could compromise their data privacy.” It also points out that, “one in three people [are] struggling to operate their smart gadgets.”

The ADT survey interviewed more than 1,000 individuals, and learned that “the majority owned at least one smart home device,” while “more than 60 percent possessed between two and five connected devices.” Almost 80 percent of interviewees preferred voice-commanded devices than operating an app, with 84 percent of those citing convenience as the driving reason for the purchase. They also liked the ability to track home-related data and enjoy greater security.

Sixty-three percent of respondents owned a smart hub device, and 90 percent said they were satisfied with what they had. Amazon “seems to possess a sizeable lead, with 71 percent of respondents using an Alexa smart hub and 21 percent using Google Assistant.” Nearly 73 percent of those interviewed have a smart TV, with 35 percent adding that they owned a smart speaker (other than a hub).

Smart TVs were “also regarded as one of the best smart home purchases by ADT’s respondents.” More than 25 percent “owned a smart thermostat, and a similar percentage had smart light bulbs.” About 30 percent of participants had an installed smart camera for home security, with 94 percent of them “pleased with these products.” These devices, which had a major uptick in 2016, also encouraged over 40 percent of them to “think more about safety.”

Smart security devices “were generally viewed in positive terms, with 12 percent of respondents saying they viewed smart cameras as among the best possible purchases, while just 4 percent deemed them among the worst.

The survey showed that “respondents were evenly split on which forms of security mattered more,” with older people prioritizing data protection and “millennials and members of Generation Z favor[ing] physical security.”

IoT devices also raised privacy concerns for some of the survey’s respondents. “In this group, the predominant concern was a sense of continuous surveillance and the notion that collected data could be mishandled.”

According to a recent survey, nearly half of Americans “believe smart devices are recording consumers’ conversations to target them more effectively with advertising.” Moving forward, as IoT devices continue to grow, says CEPro, consumers’ “chief concern will be which companies to trust as they inevitably move toward connected devices.”