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Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Safety of smart home products is key to consumers: Insights from Kudelski Security

Before attending CONNECTIONS™Europe in Amsterdam, Christopher Schouten, Senior Director Product Marketing at Kudelski Security, answered several industry questions:

Where do you feel the largest opportunity is for the smart home industry in Europe?

The largest opportunity for the smart home industry in Europe is to continue to make itself relevant to the daily lives of consumers; to ensure the solutions they provide meet real needs in four major areas: security, home automation, convenience and health. But individual products are often no more than fascinating gadgets, while ecosystems of gadgets that communicate securely with one another can really deliver on the consumer value propositions listed above. Like a thermostat that turns off when my wallet leaves the house to save money. Or a hallway light that turns on when there’s motion at my front door in order to ensure maximum security and convenience. Or a list of my most recent weight and blood pressure measurements that I can send directly to my doctor if I choose to. When this information is securely stored, transmitted and processed by IoT systems that have been properly engineered and certified to respect a consumer’s privacy, then consumers will have the confidence to adopt them in greater numbers, and that will be good for business.

What challenges does Europe face with rolling out new smart home products and services?

Today many smart home products and services still only enjoy “gadget status.” Only interesting to early adopters who embrace new technologies more easily than the mass market. In order to improve the adoption of these technologies, we have to convince consumers that they are safe to use, and that consumers’ privacy and data will be properly protected. With new news about major corporate data breeches arriving ever week, consumers are understandably wary of using any device or service that might compromise their home security, the safety of their family or the safety of their money, so the real challenge will be to offer useful, relevant solutions that include a high level of security as part of their overall value proposition.

How will companies leverage the growth in the market in the next 12 months?

The companies that will be the most successful are the ones who bring complete solutions to market and educate mass market consumers about the benefits they will derive from investing them. How much money will they save? How much easier will their lives be? How much healthier or more secure will it help them and their families be? The companies that succeed in most clearly educating and convincing consumers that they are solving a real problem or providing a real benefit without compromising on security, privacy, or safety will be the ones who will leverage the growth in the smart home market.

We are looking forward to hearing you present, but what are you most looking forward to about the show this year?

As always with Connections Europe, I’m most looking forward to hearing about real-life, successful smart home solution implementations from both service providers as well as consumer electronics manufacturers, and how they’ve successfully communicated their value propositions to customers, because this is as much about marketing and education as it is about the technology itself … perhaps even more so!

Schouten will speak on the session “Securing the Smart Home: Privacy and Security” alongside speakers from Verimatrix, SoftAtHome, and Intel Security.

For more information on CONNECTIONS™ Europe and how your company can become involved, visit www.connectionseurope.com

Next: SmartThings: Voice control crucial to smart home growth in Europe
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