Consumers are increasingly comfortable self-installing smart energy devices, such as smart light bulbs, smart thermostats and smart plugs/adapters, a new study has found.
The survey of 10,000 US broadband households by research firm Parks Associates found that 59% of smart thermostats were self-installed, along with 79% of smart light bulbs and 68% of smart lighting control systems.
“Smart-energy consumers are DIYers, so utilities with broad BYOD (bring your own device) programmes are able to target the largest segments of smart home device ownership,” commented Denise Ernst, vice president at Parks Associates. “Retail is the dominant sales channel for smart energy devices, including both brick-and-mortar stores as well as online retail. Partnerships with these third parties can help utilities expand offerings and improve customer satisfaction.”
The research also found that three-quarters (76%) of households with solar panels are interested in a system that connects smart thermostats and water heaters in order to make the most of their investment.
“Depending upon the state policies on renewable energy, the investment in solar energy for the home has too long of a perceived payback period,” Ernst explained. “By integrating with other devices in the home, this payback period can be reduced.”
More than half (54%) of US broadband households do not know if their electricity provider offers energy programmes, while 35% of smart home device owners are knowledgeable about rebate programmes.
A third (32%) of smart thermostat owners reported that rebates, discounts or coupons from their electricity provider did not have any impact on their purchase decision, but two-thirds said those offers did impact their decision.