Is the future of smart-home control local or centralized—or is there a third option?
Residential homes will change more during the next couple of decades than they did during the hundreds of years preceding them. This is according to Jonathan Collins, research director at ABI Research, who explains further by saying that homes will expand in capability, function, and activity, thereby reflecting the wider global needs of the planet, economies, societies, and individuals. The homes themselves will not do this on their own, of course; it’ll be the people living within them who drive the change, and they will do so primarily because smart homes offer convenience and more control over energy usage. Having more insight into and control over energy usage can lead to lower energy costs and a reduced carbon footprint—things businesses and consumers are caring more about due to rising energy costs and climate change.
The trend toward sustainability is boosting markets like smart home, which MarketsandMarkets projects will grow from $84.5 billion in 2021 to $138.9 billion in 2026. It’s not just convenience and a desire for more sustainable living that’s driving connectivity in residential home environments, either. The smart-home ecosystem has developed from a niche market to a mainstream one in the past few decades, says Collins, and along with that maturation has come changes in the accessibility and affordability of smart-home devices. There’s also been a shift from local to centralized control, but the debate rages on—should smart homes leverage cloud or edge, or is there a third option?
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