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Smart Homes, Smart Cars, Smart Appliances: Are Consumers Ready?

Smart Homes, Smart Cars, Smart Appliances: Are Consumers Ready?

What rooms need to be smarter?When you were young, did you ever wonder what the future might look like? Would you be dropping the kids off to school in your flying minivan? In the future, perhaps the age-old daily question–What should I wear today?–may no longer exist because your smart closet digitally plans out a week’s wardrobe and sends a notification into your smart contact lens, all while you’re brushing your teeth.

Although we have a ways to go before flying cars and talking closets are the norm, if this year’s Consumer Electronics Show (CES) is any indication of what we can expect in the years to come, we may not be far off. The hot point of discussion at the Vegas-based technology conference stems from this concept–The Internet of things. No longer is the Internet confined to just desktops, tablets or smartphones; it’s expanding into pretty much every part of consumers’ daily lives and into their homes. This week’s announcement from Google on their acquisition of smart thermostat company, Nest, seems to prove that smart homes are definitely on the horizon. Smart TVs, home entertainment systems, appliances…many are on the market right now and many more are soon to come.

As the tech landscape continues to evolve and shape-shift, we wanted to find out how Americans feel about this fast-growing trend. How interested are they in these new products and do they feel ready for all things new (and smart!) in the home and out? Using SurveyMonkey Audience, we asked nearly 800 consumers to share their thoughts. Our main monkey, Dave Goldberg, stopped by Bloomberg West to chat with Sam Grobart and Emily Chang about our survey results and the state of smart tech.

You can view their full interview here and our breakdown below.

People want smart homes–they’re just not ready to invest in them yet.

  • An impressive 70% say they’d like a house that’s totally connected.
  • Of this population however, nearly a third of folks don’t have any smart devices in the homes currently.
  • Cost is the driving factor for hesitation with over half (58%) reporting that these devices are too expensive.
  • Lack of confidence is another big reason for hesitation. 31% don’t believe they’re tech savvy enough yet and 16% think the idea of smart homes is just downright creepy.

What rooms should be the smartest?

  • The kitchen should be the smartest room in the household, according to 33% of respondents. Same with the living room and with the influx of smart game consoles such as the Xbox, companies are responding accordingly.
  • A mere 6% of consumers wish for smart bathrooms. Hm, talking toilets anyone?
  • Most people also say they’re not using their smartphones or tablets to control their in-home smart devices.

Consumers are really into the ideas of connected cars.

  • The concept of smart cars is much easier for people to ride along with than smart homes as many are already using their cars as smart devices (47%). Nearly three quarters are interested in purchasing a car that includes an iOS or Android operating system.
  • Respondents currently don’t believe that smarter equates safety. Nearly 80% say they believe there is some degree of safety risk when driving cars with smart functions.
  • What about a self-driving car? Folks are nearly 50/50 split with 49% saying they’re not at all likely to buy one and 51% saying, Sign me up!
  • What car make do people believe are the most high-tech? Perhaps surprisingly, electric car-maker Tesla claimed the top spot. Mercedes-Benz came in second. BMW and Ford rounded out the bottom two.

How about you? Ready for all things smart technology in the home and out? Share your thoughts below!

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