Description

Providing the most comprehensive and up-to-date information and analysis of the US Smart Homes market, including the behaviors, preferences and habits of the consumer.

The smart home category continues to grow as innovative products pique consumer interest and entry-point products such as smart speakers and smart light bulbs make connected household technology an affordable option. Smart home technology has evolved from surveillance/security systems and novelty for entertainment to more diverse areas such as cleaning, HVAC systems and more. As the benefits and affordability of smart home technology improve, more consumers will enter the category seeking solutions for their homes.

Low mortgages have contributed to a strong housing market, with home ownership growing to 67.9% in April 2020. However, 2020 also saw rising home prices, resulting in ownership falling back to 65.6% by January 2021. With home improvement becoming more important throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, average spending on home services rose by nearly 45% in 2020.

Environmental issues have become more and more important to consumers, with the pandemic drawing more attention to the impact on the planet. A quarter of consumers agree that household care is one of the most important categories to shop sustainably for, with a 57% of consumers qualifying as environmentally conscious. This could provide opportunities for smart homes to further market eco-friendly features.

Read on to discover more details or take a look at all of our U.S Household, House and Home market research.

Quickly understand

  • The impact of COVID-19 on consumers and their engagement with smart home technology.
  • Who are the key demographics for smart home products and where marketers should focus efforts for sales growth.
  • What factors shoppers look for in smart home purchases and what themes resonate best with smart home participants.
  • Attitudes toward smart home technology and how consumers perceive the category.

Covered in this report

Brands: Apple, LG, Google, ADT, SimpliSafe, Samsung.

Expert analysis from a specialist in the field

Written by Buddy Lo, a leading analyst in the Food & Drink sector, his extensive knowledge delivers in-depth commentary and analysis to highlight current trends and add expert context to the numbers.

COVID-19 drove consumers back into their homes, which led them to prioritize their surroundings. As a result, spending on the home increased dramatically over the last year, which has benefited the smart home category. Device adoption and new digital behaviors established during 2020 should drive further consumer participation in the smart home category that lasts beyond the pandemic.

Buddy Lo
Senior Technology and Consumer Electronics Analyst

 

Table of Contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
    • Key issues covered in this Report
    • Definition
    • Market context
    • Economic and other assumptions
    • COVID-19: US context
  2. Executive Summary

    • Top takeaways
    • Market overview
    • Impact of COVID-19 on smart homes
      • Figure 1: Short-, medium- and long-term impact of COVID-19 on the smart home category, May 2021
    • Opportunities and challenges
    • Home entertainment products could be the gateway into other connected devices
      • Figure 2: Smart home device ownership, March 2020-April 2021
    • Security is an essential component of brand reputation and marketing messaging
      • Figure 3: Important smart home device factors, April 2021
    • Remote control is the leading theme for smart home technology
      • Figure 4: Personal smart home characteristics, March 2020-April 2021
    • Consumers have positive sentiments toward smart home technology and benefits
      • Figure 5: Attitudes toward smart homes – Benefits/automation, April 2021
  3. The Market – Key Takeaways

    • Home ownership dips following COVID-19 pandemic
    • Smart home device ownership trending upwards
    • Global computer chip shortage will apply demand and pricing pressure
    • Remote work will drive further smart home integration
  4. Market Indicators – State of Home

    • COVID-19 boosts US home ownership rates – but maybe only temporarily
      • Figure 6: US home ownership rates, by quarter, January 2000-January 2021
      • Figure 7: National Association of Home Builders single family home starts and housing market index, January 2005-March 2021
    • Younger consumers bear brunt of COVID-19 economic impact
      • Figure 8: Unemployment rate, by age, January 2020-March 2021
    • Impact of COVID-19 on smart homes
      • Figure 9: Short-, medium- and long-term impact of COVID-19 on the smart home category, May 2021
  5. Smart Home Device Ownership

    • Smart device ownership increases to nearly eight in 10 households
      • Figure 10: Smart home device ownership, March 2020-April 2021
    • Connected devices expected to continue growth past 2021
      • Figure 11: Smart home device ownership, March 2019, March 2020 and April 2021
  6. Market Factors

    • Global computer chip shortage will raise prices on smart home devices
    • Younger consumers will drive the smart home market
    • Remote work means a continuation of more time spent at home
    • Wi-fi 6 allows for more connected devices
    • Sustainability messaging could attract new consumers
  7. Companies and Brands – Key Takeaways

    • Apple looks to revamp its smart home products
    • Amazon’s “Certified for Humans” badge offers confidence on its marketplace
    • Google’s partnership with ADT combines tech know-how with leading security service
    • LG aims at the uber wealthy with LG Signature line
    • SimpliSafe outspends competition on podcast ads
  8. Competitive Strategies

    • Apple
    • Apple HomePod discontinued after years of struggling to find buyers
    • Apple looks to revamp its approach to the smart home market
    • Amazon
    • Amazon moves to make the smart home simple for consumers
      • Figure 12: Amazon.com “Certified for Humans” badge, April 2021
    • Google
    • Google partners with ADT for smart home security
    • Google service outage leads to negative press on its smart home devices
    • LG
    • LG abandons smartphone category to focus on the smart home and IoT devices
    • LG Signature line goes for the uber wealthy
    • Samsung
    • “A Better Normal” – Samsung’s presentation at CES 2021 focused on the smart home
    • Samsung teases home robot at CES 2021
  9. Market Opportunities

    • TVs are the center of the home
    • Home movers and renovators are great opportunity to sell smart appliances
      • Figure 13: Home behaviors, April 2021
      • Figure 14: Breakdown of smart home devices owned, by home behaviors, April 2021
    • SimpliSafe spends big on podcasting
      • Figure 15: Online ad recall from the past seven days – Podcasts, by gender and age, and age and income, June 2020
      • Figure 16: Estimated podcast spend, by home security providers, January 2019-March 2021
  10. The Consumer – Key Takeaways

    • Growing percentage of self-described smart homes
    • Ownership rates increase across majority of smart home devices
    • Younger consumers will drive growth in smart home category
    • Security is the primary concern and feature for smart home devices
    • Consumers feel smart home features are becoming more affordable
    • COVID-19 shifts priorities to the home for consumers
  11. Smart Home Incidence

    • Increasing number of consumers consider their home a “smart home”
      • Figure 17: Personal home perception, March 2020-April 2021
    • Age, wealth and gender drive smart home participation
      • Figure 18: Personal home perception, by gender, age and household income, April 2021
    • Remote and voice controls drive participation in smart home category
      • Figure 19: Smart home characteristics – Among those who say they have a smart home, March 2020-April 2021
      • Figure 20: Smart home characteristics – Among those who say they do not have a smart home, March 2020-April 2021
  12. Smart Home Device Ownership

    • Increased ownership rates across majority of smart home devices
      • Figure 21: Smart home device ownership, March 2020-April 2021
      • Figure 22: Smart home device ownership, by number of smart home devices owned, April 2021
    • Vast majority of men 18-44 with at least $75K household income own a smart home device
      • Figure 23: Smart home device ownership, by gender, age and household income, April 2021
      • Figure 24: Breakdown of number of smart home devices owned, by gender and age, April 2021
    • Smart thermostats can also draw consumers into smart home category
      • Figure 25: Smart home devices owned, by number of smart home devices owned, April 2021
    • Hybrid commuters show highest smart home device ownership rates
      • Figure 26: Number of smart home devices owned, by work commute, April 2021
      • Figure 27: Smart home devices owned, by work commute, April 2021
  13. Smart Home Device Purchase Interest

    • Smart lights lead purchase intent among non-owners
      • Figure 28: Smart home device purchase intent, April 2021
      • Figure 29: Breakdown of number of smart home devices interested in owning, April 2021
      • Figure 30: Number of smart home devices interested in owning, by smart light owners, April 2021
    • Consumers with no interest in smart home devices significantly older
      • Figure 31: Age breakdown, by consumers who own or are interested in owning a smart home device, April 2021
  14. Important Smart Home Device Factors

    • Security is the top concern for consumers shopping for smart home products
      • Figure 32: Important smart home device factors, April 2021
    • Younger consumers value the aesthetics while older consumers value support
      • Figure 33: Important smart home device factors, by age, April 2021
    • Positive online reviews can increase participation among Asians
      • Figure 34: Important smart home device factors, by race and Hispanic origin, April 2021
    • Security is paramount when it comes to smart home devices
      • Figure 35: TURF Analysis – Desired smart features, April 2021
    • Methodology
  15. Home Behaviors

    • Only half of consumers have reliable internet throughout their entire home
      • Figure 36: Home behaviors, April 2021
    • Home changes draw interest in high-end smart home devices
      • Figure 37: Smart home device ownership and interest in owning, by home behaviors, April 2021
  16. Smart Home Characteristics

    • Association with high cost drops year over year
      • Figure 38: Smart home characteristics, March 2020-April 2021
    • Participation in smart home category changes perceptions
      • Figure 39: Smart home characteristics, by personal home perception, April 2021
      • Figure 40: Smart home characteristics, by ownership or interest in a smart home device, April 2021
    • Black consumers more likely to associate smart homes with surveillance
      • Figure 41: Smart home characteristics, by race and Hispanic origin, April 2021
  17. Attitudes toward Smart Home Technology

    • COVID-19 has elevated the importance of the home for consumers
      • Figure 42: Attitudes toward smart homes – Sanitation/COVID-19, April 2021
    • Smart home tech widely considered beneficial
      • Figure 43: Attitudes toward smart homes – Benefits/automation, April 2021
      • Figure 44: Attitudes toward smart home technology – Benefits/automation, by number of smart home devices owned, April 2021
    • Smart home category slightly improves perception of affordability and cost benefits
      • Figure 45: Attitudes toward smart homes – Cost, March 2020-April 2021
    • Concerns about hacking are far greater than installation/setup
      • Figure 46: Attitudes toward smart homes – Hacking/use/installation, April 2021
      • Figure 47: Attitudes toward smart homes – Use/installation, March 2020-April 2021
      • Figure 48: Attitudes toward smart homes – Use/installation, by number of smart home products owned, April 2021
  18. Consumer Segmentation – Attitudes toward Smart Home Technology

      • Figure 49: Smart home technology consumer segments, April 2021
    • Smart Home Power Users (24%)
    • Characteristics
      • Figure 50: Profile of Smart Home Power Users, April 2021
    • Opportunities
      • Figure 51: Breakdown of number of smart home devices owned, by consumer segments of attitudes toward smart home technology, April 2021
      • Figure 52: Breakdown of consumer segments, by work commutes, April 2021
      • Figure 53: Home behaviors, by consumer segments of attitudes toward smart home technology, April 2021
    • Trusting Users (27%)
    • Characteristics
      • Figure 54: Profile of Trusting Users, April 2021
      • Figure 55: Smart home devices owned, by consumer segments of attitudes toward smart home technology, April 2021
    • Opportunities
      • Figure 56: Smart home device purchase intent, by consumer segments of attitudes toward smart home technology, April 2021
    • Non-users (22%)
    • Characteristics
      • Figure 57: Profile of Non-users, April 2021
    • Opportunities
    • Smart Home Beginners (27%)
    • Characteristics
      • Figure 58: Profile of Smart Home Beginners, April 2021
    • Opportunities
  19. Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

    • Data sources
    • Consumer survey data
    • Consumer qualitative research
    • Marketing creative
    • Abbreviations and terms
    • Abbreviations
    • Terms
  20. Appendix – TURF Analysis

      • Figure 59: Table – TURF Analysis – Desired smart features, April 2021
    • TURF methodology

About the report

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