Familiarity with the term ‘smart home’ has more than doubled in the past five years in the Netherlands, according to research by GfK. Almost a third of Dutch consumers know what a smart home is, and almost a fifth expect to have one within the next two years.
Over four in ten (44%) see convenience as the main benefit of a smart home. This is followed by cost and energy savings thanks to the enhanced control of home appliances and systems.
A key ingredient of the smart home is a fast, stable internet connection, and GfK found the Dutch have been investing significantly in this in the past year. The market for routers and Wi-Fi boosters has more than doubled in the past year, and during the lockdown, growth in certain products was as high as 700 percent, the market researcher said.
High costs are holding back almost half of Dutch consumers (45%) from investing in a smart home system. However, fewer are afraid of the security risks, at 27 percent compared to 31 percent a year ago. Over four in ten (41%) said they’re open to a smart home helping to increase the feeling of safety.
Dutch households already own an average five smart devices, and two-thirds of these were chosen for their ‘smart’ applications. The market for smart speakers with voice assistants is growing, and these are used mainly for music (52%) and checking the weather (41%). Over a third (37%) said they use the voice assistant to control smart applications in the home.
Consumers looking at investing in a smart home mainly orientate themselves online. They buy the products preferably from an electronics specialist, at a physical or online shop. A quarter who don’t yet own a smart system said they would prefer to have it installed.
This research was conducted in cooperation with the Smart Home Society, an initiative of Techniek Nederland, GfK, BSH, PostNL, D-Link, Somfy, Netatmo and BCC.