How Connectivity Issues are being resolved in the Smart Home

by Parks Associates | Dec. 10, 2020

A growing percentage of smart home device owners now experience multiple problems with their devices each year, and within the last twelve months, one-third of smart home device owners report experiencing technical problems. Many of these issues stem from problems with wireless connectivity which disrupts a device’s ability to communicate with the home network. Additionally, some households report interruptions with the broadband provider’s service due to the increasing strain on the home network caused by the addition of multiple devices and increased bandwidth demand for video streaming.

The increasing burden on US home networks for work, school, and entertainment makes it increasingly important for these networks to be reliable and function optimally. The demand for reliable home networks is driving major tech companies to develop new home networking solutions. Companies have developed hardware-based solutions such as mesh networks that will optimize Wi-Fi networks and promote better connectivity experiences throughout the home. Major tech companies including Google, Amazon, and Apple are also developing a connectivity standard (CHIP – Connected Home over IP) for smart home devices that promises to reduce connectivity and interoperability problems.

Connectivity issues with smart home devices happen fairly frequently and can often be resolved without assistance; however, sometimes households require professional technical support. 60% of consumers experiencing technical problems with smart home devices resolve the issue themselves, while 34% resolve the issue using a professional technician. With the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, a substantial portion of consumers are more hesitant than before to receive in-home support, and as a result, support providers have leaned on methods to serve these customers remotely. Service providers like Verizon and Cox had invested in remote support tools even before the pandemic to ensure that they can provide services to all customers, and COVID-19 has accelerated the use of these remote support tools. Other service providers are partnering with solution providers that offer software that monitors consumer home networks to minimize service disruptions through proactive problem identification, optimize network speed, and protect the network from security and privacy threats.

For a deeper look at the paths consumers take to resolve tech support issues, their expectations and preferences for resolving issues, and the changes in the use of technology and consumer support preferences in the era of COVD-19, please check out Parks Associates’ Shifting Support Needs: Opportunities for Remote Solutions report.

For more information about Parks Associates research, visit http://www.parksassociates.com or call 972-490-1113.
 



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