The smart home entertainment market has traditionally been dominated by high-end installer systems but more recently, self-install, off-the-shelf smart home systems have bought a new wave of competition and smart home options to consumers. In a new report of smart home entertainment systems, ABI Research, a market foresight advisory firm providing strategic guidance on the most compelling transformative technologies, finds that off-the-shelf entertainment systems have the potential to be a significant threat to traditional installer system entertainment players.
“Off-the-shelf entertainment systems are well poised to challenge installer entertainment system providers,” says Shiv Patel, Research Analyst at ABI Research. “Given the rate at which off-the-shelf entertainment systems are developing, as well as the significant backing from companies such as Amazon, Samsung, Comcast, and others, there is likely to be increasing fierce competition in the smart home entertainment system market over the coming years.”
Off-the-shelf systems have seen rapid developments in terms of entertainment functionality and device support. Amazon Alexa, for example, added key entertainment features such as multi-room audio, in-app control of devices, and end-user automation services over the course of 2017. Elsewhere, companies such as Samsung have attempted to replicate the success of installer systems, by creating a single platform approach to smart home control, exemplified by their recent 2018 announcement to create a single SmartThings cloud service.
Installer systems meanwhile are attempting to meet off-the-shelf entertainment systems head-on in the wider consumer smart home market by pushing lower price points and reducing installation times. Despite these efforts, a cost-benefit analysis conducted by ABI Research still found installer systems represent a significant premium over their off-the systems counterparts, regardless of offering similar functionality.
It is at this lower end of the installer entertainment smart home market that installer system providers and their network partners are set for the greatest challenges over the coming years. With the ever-increasing functionality, decreasing difficulties in installation, and growing automation capabilities, it will start to become more difficult for installer systems providers to justify the higher capital and installation costs of their systems to the consumer. “Over the next two years, we may see off-the-shelf players start to edge out their installer entertainment system counterparts,” concludes Patel.
These findings are from ABI Research’s Integrating Smart Home and Entertainment Services report. This report is part of the company’s Smart Home research service, which includes research, data, and Executive Foresights.
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