CES 2021: Innovation in the Smart Home Space

by Parks Associates | Jan. 15, 2021

CES 2021 has wrapped, and this year’s show was unlike any CES events in the past due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite the lack of a traditional in-person trade show in Las Vegas, the virtual event showcased thousands of announcements from hundreds of companies. This year, with so many people spending so much time at home, the smart home category came into particular focus. Some of the biggest trends in the smart home space at CES this year were touchless devices, cleanliness and personal wellness technology, and new innovations in Wi-Fi sensing abilities.

Touchless video doorbells made a grand appearance this year in light of the COVID-19 era with ArloAlarm.com Touchless Doorbell and Alarm.com both unveiling a touchless video doorbell. The doorbells use video analytics to ring and alert a user whenever it sees someone approaching and standing by the door, eliminating the need for anyone to physically press a button and "avoid encountering germs, bacteria and viruses that may exist on surfaces around the front door."

Devices and sensors that measure and purify air quality were also a big trend at CES this year. Bosch announced a new sensor that can detect “exhaled air” by measuring factors such as relative humidity and air quality. Bosch is also expanding its AI capabilities, adding high precision body temperature measuring to its smart security cameras to help in the fight against the virus. Filtrete launched a connected air purifier that combines its filters with an air quality sensor. Airthings built a sensor called Wave Plus, a version of the Wave Mini which tracks carbon dioxide levels, humidity and temperature, which could help identify how much more likely a person may be to transmit the virus.

The smart home space at CES this year also saw innovation in Wi-Fi sensing, which uses disruptions in Wi-Fi signals from compatible smart devices to detect motion. Linksys broadened the number of devices that can use this technology to other Wi-Fi capable devices compatible with the Aware network. Hex is using the same technology to create an innovative home security system comprising of a hub and a varied assortment of smart plug-in devices that transforms smart devices in the home into a sensor providing real time updates. 

Aside from the major trends we saw this year, other smart home devices that we regularly see at CES such as smart door locks, smart appliances, smart lighting, and smart water sensors and valves were also present at the virtual expo.

For a deeper look at the smart home space, please check out the Parks Associates’ Smart Home Tracker.

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

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