Last year, the world market for smart home devices reached $54.97 billion, as the research company Markets and Markets estimated. Over the next five years, this market will grow at an average annual rate of 13.6 %, and by 2023, it will reach $137.91 billion.
In 2016, North America accounted for the most sold intelligent home devices. The most popular among Americans and Canadians were smart systems for lighting control. The popularity of intelligent thermostats, door locks, intercoms and CCTV systems is also growing.
Recently, the popularity of smart homes gains popularity thanks to voice assistants from Amazon, Apple, and Google, as well. The ability to manage smart gadgets not only with smartphones and tablets but also with smart speakers via Alexa, Siri, and Google Assistant, attracts the buyers.
Intelligent home systems: brands and technologies
Home control systems are not a surprise for a modern person. However, not every expert can gain insight into their diversity. There is a great spectrum of intelligent home systems behind the flow of the same phrases about light control, climate control, energy saving and future houses: wired, wireless, centralized, distributed, open, closed and so on. Each of them requires a serious description, but we will try to present them briefly.
The biggest of intelligent home systems from the USA
Crestron and AMX are leaders in the US market of smart home systems. Both companies are developing a wide range of touch panels and control processors for audio-video systems. Excellent applications for the iPad, electrical load control equipment with installation on DIN rail and many third-party control drivers maintain their reputation as producers of expensive control automation systems. Though, they are trying to enter into a more available segment.
Control4 also attracts quite a lot of attention. The Company represents several touch panels with maximum functionality, central control processors and wireless technology ZigBeePro. It is one of the leaders in home automation in the US.
Lutron invented an electronic dimmer in 1961. Its systems, Grafik Eye, HomeWorks, are the main authorities in the field of lighting control. Often they are used in conjunction with Crestron and AMX.
A short while ago, in 2015, because of the merger of Charter with TWC and Bright House, a new large player appeared in the US telecommunications market, serving 23.9 million customers in 41 states. After merging Charter with TWC and Bright House, the customers meet a new brand for intelligent home — Spectrum.
Basic prices for installation of intelligent home equipment
|Starter kit (security or lighting and door control)||$40 to $500|
|Wireless mesh systems||$300 to $600|
|Monthly service||$35 to $70 per month|
|Cloud automation||$179 to $299|
The global companies
The giants of the electrical industry behave differently in the smart house market.
Swedish ABB devotes all its efforts in the field of home automation to the active promotion of KNX technology. And it has achieved significant success, not only in Europe but also in other parts of the world.
French Legrand, on the contrary, refused such a development in favor of its own system, which is called MyHome after the purchase of the Italian Bticino. It uses both an SCS wired bus and ZigBee wireless devices. In a more expensive segment, there is the brand Vantage by Legrand.
European manufacturers of control systems
Intelligent home is not the main field for German Beckhoff and WAGO. Still, their flexible, configurable controllers are widely used for automating climate systems, resource counting, lighting control. If you need to connect Modbus, KNX, EnOcean, DALI and other protocols in the same installation, many installers consider it convenient to use the Beckhoff or WAGO controllers for this.
Belgian Teletask manufactures automation equipment for more than 25 years. Control devices are known for an unusual design, and the central controller has good opportunities for resource counting and control.
Czech Inels manufactures bus and radio frequency home control systems, simple and inexpensive solutions, control systems via TV, iOS devices, and Windows.
The systems of home automation and building control have turned from a small branch for large manufacturers into a full-fledged market growing at an incredible rate. An intelligent home is no longer exotic, but a common demand for your comfort and safety. Every day new interesting solutions appear, and maybe tomorrow we will brag to our friends not about a new phone, but about a new device from an intelligent home spectrum.