Friday, December 18, 2015

Consumer concerns for malware and identity theft to help drive next stage in tech support service, Radialpoint, F-Secure, Ihiji, and Sutherland Global Services address IT strategies in smart home

New research from Parks Associates finds that 50% of U.S. broadband households are very concerned about viruses/spyware and 50% are very concerned about data or identity theft, which will be among the key incentives to expanding the adoption of tech support services in the IoT.

Parks Associates will address support solutions for the IoT ecosystems market and new opportunities for value-added services at the firm’s CONNECTIONS™ Summit: IoT, Entertainment, and the Connected Consumer. The session “Support Solutions: IoT and the Connected Home” features speakers from, Radialpoint, F-Secure, Ihiji, Sutherland Global Services, and Parks Associates’ research analyst Patrice Samuels.

Age Distribution among Technical Support Subscribers | Parks Associates

“Support service subscription rates have remained largely unchanged from 2014 to 2015, but more subscribers are using their support services,” Samuels said. “Retention has also improved, even among subscribers who have never used the service -- more than 40% are very likely to renew their subscriptions. Companies offering tech support need to focus on bringing in new subscribers, and consumer concerns about security and privacy present an opportunity, where even consumers who have never considered a technical support service show strong concerns. At CES® 2016, there will be a renewed focus on tech support as a value-added service to protect connected device owners against malware, device hacks, and privacy violations.”

360 View Update: Consumer Engagement with Support Services shows currently three-fourths of U.S. broadband households have never had a tech support subscription for computers, smartphones, tablets, and other electronic devices. Fewer consumers in younger age groups subscribed to support services in 2015 than in 2014, while subscriptions among older age groups increased over the same period.

“The demographic profiles of technical support subscribers are changing,” Samuels said. “Consumers 65 years and older are the highest adopters of technical support subscriptions, with 22% subscribing to a support service.”

Samuels will moderate the session “Support Solutions: IoT and the Connected Home” at 11:00 a.m. on January 7, 2016, at CONNECTIONS™ Summit at CES. The session examines innovative support technologies to ensure an optimal IoT and connected home experience for consumers. It also addresses the necessity of privacy protection and online security related to connected devices and other services in the home. Panelists include:

  • Lee Gruenfeld, VP, Strategic Initiatives,
  • Jeremy Hill, VP Product Management and Marketing, Radialpoint
  • Mika Majapuro, Director of Product Management for IOT, F-Secure
  • Stuart Rench, CEO, Ihiji
  • Ratul Sengupta, Vice President, Client Engagement, Sutherland Global Services

“Research is revealing some consumer resistance to home automation as providers try to push adoption beyond the technically adventurous ‘hobbyist’ buyer,” said Lee Gruenfeld, VP, Strategic Initiatives, “Support organizations need to exploit new technologies to get past just fixing things when they break and move towards helping consumers get real value from their technology.”

“Customers have very high expectations of the support experiences they receive for their IoT devices because they are performing mission-critical tasks like securing the home and monitoring health,” said Jeremy Hill, VP Product Management and Marketing, Radialpoint. “We believe service providers’ support teams will be instrumental in ensuring new devices that people bring home have safe and secure configurations.”

"The proliferation of connected devices has created a new ecosystem of support tools,” said Stuart Rench, CEO, Ihiji. “These are systems which range from being highly sophisticated, to those which seem like afterthoughts of product design. Consumers are finding themselves struggling to know where to turn for support and have shown that they will often abandon a product or an IoT category entirely if making it work is too difficult. The industry has to work together to adopt secure methodologies that provide proper insight and resolution toolsets which will contribute to the enhancement of the end user experience."

“Today households have at least six Internet-connected devices which are all susceptible to online threats and hacks. Tomorrow the number could be 50 and in some years maybe 500. Unfortunately, securing these devices and ensuring the consumer’s protection from common threats are usually afterthoughts for most businesses,” stated Mika Majapuro, Director of Product Management at a global cybersecurity company F-Secure. “Therefore, it is important to continue the conversation about securing your smart home and devices without inhibiting the convenience and innovation the IoT industry can and will bring to our lives.”

CONNECTIONS™ Summit: IoT, Entertainment, and the Connected Consumer will be held in the Venetian Hotel, Level 4, Room Marcello 4501. Sponsors of CONNECTIONS™ Summit include Cirrent, F-Secure, Affinegy, AirTies,, Carrier, CSS Corp, EVRYTHNG, Greenwave Systems, Icontrol Networks, MivaTek, NXP, PlumChoice, Radialpoint, ROC-Connect,, ULE Alliance, Vivint, WeatherBug Home, and Zonoff.

Follow CONNECTIONS™ Summit on Twitter at @CONN_Summit and #CONNSummit16. During CES, visit Parks Associates at booth # 70,959 in the Sands. Registration for CES is at

Registered CES media can request a press pass for CONNECTIONS™ Summit at Contact Holly Sprague,, to meet with an analyst.

About CONNECTIONS™ Summit at CES

CONNECTIONS™ Summit at CES is an annual research and industry event hosted by international research firm Parks Associates at CES in Las Vegas. In 2023, the executive event features one day of panel discussions on the state of the smart home, connected health, home security, and new home services, with trends and implications for connected consumers and opportunities for companies to build new revenues and develop innovative business models.

The 17th annual CONNECTIONS™ Summit will take place January 5 during CES, which runs January 5-8 in Las Vegas. Parks Associates hosts a day of sessions at the Venetian Hotel, Lando 4304, followed by a networking reception. Follow the event on Twitter at @CONN_Summit.

For information about CONNECTIONS™ Summit, contact or call 972-490-1113 or visit

Next: Parks Associates announces Event Sponsors for CONNECTIONS™ Summit at CES 2016
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