Apparently, the British don’t just hate economic unions, they hate technology. According to the Telegraph and a soon-to-be-released Deloitte report, the British aren’t too keen on the Internet of Things.
In Britain, sales of connected home devices have flattened. Which is never a word you want to see around a nascent set of technologies. Especially one in the midst of a huge push from all directions, including everyone from lighting, home environment, and security companies to Big Tech like Amazon and Google. It’s the Internet of Things. It’s where we’re going. Right? Are the Brits backward?
Nah. Not in this case, at least. Their attitude toward IoT for the home is probably universal among consumers.
Right now IoT as applied to the consumer’s home life is exactly that. Things scattered everywhere. Piecemeal and random and with very little incentive to adopt.
Just look at the headline of that Telegraph piece: Internet of Things Struggles as Use of Smart Home Gadgets Flatlines. I mean, “home gadgets”? There’s not a worse word for a piece of technology than “gadget.” It’s a word reserved for frivolous ideas, the type of tech that’s meant just for playing around with as opposed to improving a person’s life.
When’s the last time you called your phone a “gadget”? It’s probably been a while. Because it’s important. It’s a lifeline, an entertainment center, a community hub, the thing that helps you navigate life. It’s important.
And as soon as people stop looking at connected home devices as gadgets, that’s when it’ll take hold. But that will take lower cost and easier, more streamlined integration. I’m bad enough at analog home improvement projects, much less adding a layer of digital atop it.
I almost want the connected home to be a packaged deal instead of so DIY. Like the way we buy cable and Internet access. Or the way we buy a kitchen remodel. “Yes, hello. I have a house. Can you make it smart? Next Thursday? Great.”
Regardless of how it happens, though, it’ll only happen when the Internet of Things is less “of things” and more “of the home.”