As technology and connectivity improves, more and more commonplace items and appliances are becoming connected. The eventuality of this trend is what tech market watchers call the "internet of things," a term meant to convey our lives when nearly every part of them are connected in some way.
One of the earliest manifestations of this tech will be smart homes that adapt to their dwellers' whims. Already energy efficiency systems for houses are beginning to become smarter. Market research firm Navigant Research today released a new report predicting that the home energy management (HEM) market will continue to grow in the coming years, eventually becoming a billion-dollar industry.
The report estimates that $512 Million was spent on HEM systems worldwide during 2013. Navigant predicts that the market will steadily rise to top $2.8 billion by the year 2020. Following this peak the firm sees the market dropping quickly back down to only $1.8 billion in revenue in 2022.
The HEM market is, of course, heavily tied to the fledgling smart thermostat market. Navigant expects 32 million smart thermostats to have been installed worldwide by the year 2020. The recent Google acquisition of Nest is also seen as a strong sign for the coming HEM market.
“Companies like Comcast, ADT, Verizon, and AT&T in the United States have added energy management as an option that can be bundled with home security, automation, or internet access,” said Neil Strother, senior research analyst at Navigant. “The uptake of home energy management by consumers is still relatively low, but these service providers are seeding a market that has reasonable potential over the next several years.”