Around the world, more than 80 million smart home thermostats will be connected to smart city grid control by 2022, according to a new report from ABI Research.
By then, the global installed base of smart homes is expected to be close to 300 million, putting smart home providers in a leading position to supply data for smart city applications.
The growing adoption of connected smart devices and systems within homes means that a large number of residential devices and systems could be used as sensor data points similar to those being developed and deployed for smart city applications.
As a result, smart home and smart city providers will make the most of the overlap between these two traditionally separate markets.
“So far, smart city programmes have been dominated by broad, large-scale implementations,” said Jonathan Collins, research director at ABI Research. “Increasingly, either these projects will expand to embrace smart home partners, or they will see some of the primary applications encroached upon by progressive smart home providers.”
Smart thermostats are a prime example as they are being integrated into utility demand management programmes.
Instead of utilities developing their own direct-to-consumer smart home services, they have turned to smart home players such as Nest, Honeywell and others to deliver remote control over end-user heating and cooling demands to help manage peak loads.
Meanwhile, home security providers Vivint and Ring (now part of Amazon) are offering shared video surveillance access to subscribers within a fixed neighbourhood, replicating smart city video monitoring of public spaces but through a crowdsourced model.
Potential future applications could include the integration of crowdsourced parking services into smart home management features such as access control or electric vehicle charging.