It’s unanimous: virtual assistants and voice interfaces were the smart home story of 2016.
That’s what 138 smart home industry executives told NextMarket Insights in a just-completed survey about the state of the smart home. The virtual/voice assistant category, which includes Amazon’s Echo/Alexa products and Google Home, was chosen as the defining story of 2016 by a large margin, with over 2/3 of respondents (68%) picking the category.
A distant second place was “smart front door”, which includes products such as video doorbells and connected locks, which was chosen by 13% percent of respondents. Smart security and mesh Wi-Fi were both 7%.
Smart kitchen was chosen by only 4% of respondents, which is not altogether surprising given the nascent nature of the category as well as it’s focused nature as compared to a horizontally disruptive technology such as virtual assistants. Technologies like Alexa are seen as having a wide across all areas of the smart home, while kitchen tech impacts a focused area (food and eating).
Even more nascent than the smart kitchen was connected commerce, which includes products like the Amazon Dash button. Only 2% saw this category as the defining story of the year.