Today businesses struggle with getting detailed information about end users and how they truly perceive a service or a product.
The lack of information also makes it hard to inform the business about key insights such as delivering information to marketing for customer segmentation purposes and for creating new services and pricing schemes.
By integrating deeper into the connected home, providers will be able to create connections in real time between users, things, products and your business.
Imagine having insight into just five percent of the data generated on a daily basis. What would you do with that information?
Those companies already exploring these opportunities are creating competitive advantages. They already understand that the new information they have gathered has helped them get better customer insight, exceled their customer engagement, and created better stickiness with clients. They also have been able to create new innovative services that show they are already ahead of the IoT game.
How did these companies do it?
First of all, they went back to basics and refocused on their core competencies, brainstorming around how their organisation could take advantage of the connections that the IoT in the home.
Then they looked into logical partnerships. By partnering with providers that are already part of the connected smart home, they have managed to create new innovative services and revenue streams and save money while still keeping their focus on their core business. For example, we are seeing an increasing amount of insurance companies partner with various connected home providers to integrate deeper into the smart home. Which insurance company providing home insurance wouldn’t want to know exactly what is going on in the home? How often the inhabitants forget to close the doors, leave windows open, forget to turn on the home security system when they leave the house? Moreover, imagine being able to predict a potential damp issue or getting someone out to assess damage directly after a fire? This is the kind of data panacea that insurance companies are looking for.
We also see a very clear opportunity here for governments, as integrating closer with the connected home will have huge opportunities in terms of smart city initiatives. Having data to understand when garbage cans need to be emptied, smart lighting for safety and security which waste less energy when no one is around … the opportunities are endless, and cities around the world are beginning to explore them, such as Smart Amsterdam https://amsterdamsmartcity.com/ and https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2014-02-23/barcelona-s-smart-trash-cans-pave-way-for-mobile-future just to name a few.
However, there are some truly novel ways of connecting “things” that we see happening at the moment. Who would have thought a couple of years ago that a car manufacturer would be interested in the connected home? The connected car is becoming a more integral part of the connected home; an interesting use case is Mercedes Benz working with Google-owned thermostat provider Nest.
The Nest thermostat is integrated into the Mercedes car system. It is a smart system that enables access to the car’s location and knows when the driver is going to come home so it can put on the heating in time for the house to be warm when the driver arrives. Imagine being stuck in traffic 10 miles from home, which would equate to “don’t turn on heating,” but being stuck in light traffic three miles from home would spring the Nest thermostat into action by “put the heating on now.” Equally, it would be easy to see an extension to this system, such as “turn on the lights in the home as I am almost home,” or “open the garage door when I am 10 yards away.”
Of course, there are already various connected home ecosystems around, such as Google Home, Amazon Echo, Apple HomeKit and Samsung SmartThings. But what makes them really useful and more consumer friendly is their partnership ecosystem. For example, Dutch smart-lighting manufacturer Philips Hue is partnering with all the bigger connected home ecosystem providers to create interesting and novel ways of smart lighting in the home and would be able to provide and create moments such as “I am in light traffic thre miles from home but I am stressed,” which would equate to a command such as “Ok, I will turn on the green soft light in the home.”
By partnering with bigger connected home ecosystem providers, companies such as Philips Hue have managed to get bigger traction in the market and a better reach for their products. It will be tough to create a fully-fledged connected home solution for most without getting into partnerships, not only to be able to create a fully-fledged system, but to share marketing efforts. The B2C market is a tough, highly competitive market where thousands of brands are vying for the consumer’s interest on a daily basis; thus, by partnering with bigger, perhaps better-known consumer brands, it will become easier to launch a connected home solution. And let’s not forget that connected home solutions are niche and appeal currently to the wealthier early adopter crowd, making it even trickier to get the consumers’ attention.
By partnering with Mercedes Benz, Nest is able to get a foothold into a large consumer market that may or may not yet have heard about Nest. However, this is not the end of the story : Just by partnering with a well-known brand could be one point in excelling in a connected home market.
To learn more about how you can utilize data and analytics to get a better understanding of your users’ behaviours, check out our Data & Analytics Summit, http://www.gartner.com/events/na/data-analytics. You also can go to Gartner Data & Analytics, http://www.gartner.com/technology/topics/data-analytics.jsp
Further information around IoT, see (http://www.gartner.com/iot) and listen to a podcast around connected home and IoT at http://www.gartner.com/podcasts/iot-connected-home/
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