Smart home research: digital association bitkom observes increasing popularity of the connected home

Smart home applications become more and more popular. This is the result of a representative survey by the digital association bitkom. 37 percent of those questioned, stated that they use it regularly and for 49 percent the holistic connection and control of all devices in their own homes is of great importance. This is where smart platforms come into play, which bundle devices and make them easy to use.

Motives for use: Comfort, security and energy efficiency

The Connected Home is so popular because it makes everyday life easier, provides comfort and increases life quality.

This is proven by the survey results:

  • 72 percent of those questioned point the increasing life quality out,
  • 65 percent have mentioned the security aspect and
  • 52 percent see smart home applications as an opportunity to make their lives more energy efficient.

From the perspective of the female respondents, finances also play a role. 28 percent are planning to reduce costs by the use of intelligent device control - a motive that 20 percent of the men surveyed also pursue. Lifelong living is another reason for use from the point of view of the group of people aged 65 and over. 38 percent of senior citizens use smart home applications to be able to live independently and securely in their own homes.

Energy efficiency & voice control have a high priority

The aspect of energy efficiency is one of the core aspects in the study. The respondents, around 60 percent, see the potential for using digital technology to control lighting, heating, sockets and other devices, which help to optimize their energy consumption. As many as 23 percent, i.e. one in four, already use intelligent lamps, 15 percent use smart thermostats and 13 percent use smart plugs. Two thirds of those surveyed also believe that no buildings should be built in future without intelligent and climate-friendly technologies.

With regard to the control of devices, the survey also outlines that one in two operate their devices by voice function. Of these, a majority ¬– 85 percent – use stationary voice assistants, 74 percent of those use them via smartphone. However, the most common way of using smartphone apps is still via fingertip (78 percent). The survey also shows that there are differences between age groups. In the 16 to 29-year-old group, 71 percent use voice control. This is significantly lower among 30 to 49-year-olds at 50 percent and lowest among 50 to 64-year-olds at 47 percent. However, voice control in particular is a promising IoT instrument for making lifelong living possible.

From the perspective of service providers, it is important to create incentives here!

Positive trend: Increased openness towards smart home applications

Looking to the future, it is also clear that respondents are more open-minded about smart home applications. They consider various possible uses:

  • 72 percent: Automation of kitchen machines (e.g. coffee machine)
  • 27 percent: Use of an intelligent locking system for parcel delivery staff and tradesmen
  • 12 percent: Care for children and elderly people in intelligent buildings
Forecast: Increasing willingness to pay

To convince potential users of the advantages of smart home applications, service providers must consider various aspects. When developing holistic solutions, financial and technical concerns should be taken into account. Also, security and support should be provided. In the long term, an increased willingness to pay can be expected:

  • 63 percent assume that every German household will be equipped smart in the future.
  • 33 percent make their decision to buy a property dependent on smart home equipment.
  • 25 percent would pay more rent for a smart apartment.

The study surveyed a group of 1,465 people in Germany who were over 16 years old. Further results and details of the survey methodology can be found at the following
Smart Home-Studie – bitkom.