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The era of the connected home, connected car, and consumer electronics

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Innovative solutions for the connected consumer markets have emerged these past years and have become smarter, faster, with an improved user experience and engaging user interface. We find them today at the home, the 'connected car' and 'connected Consumer Electronics' (CE). Over 75% of U.S. homes have broadband networks today, attracting many competing players on these significant North American markets of the smart home, connected mobility, entertainment services and technologies. With increased competition in these domains, the user interface has progressed from functional displays of data, reporting and statistics to a highly engaging, graphical and easy to use experience.

Bundled services are a major driver of smart-home technology adoption. More than 1.5 million homeowners nationwide control and manage their family's lighting, HVAC (heat, ventilation and air- conditioning), security, and manage intrusion and safety systems, by utilizing a LCD touch-screen display, the Internet, or smart phones. Applications include security, home management and control, energy management systems, and even health & wellness solutions, which are all delivered over various platforms: web-enabled, mobile with cellular and wireless communication.

According to Parks Associates, total revenues for U.S. residential security and the smart home, including equipment and monitoring, will exceed $10 billion in 2014 and reach $13 billion by 2017. Leading strategies to monetize digital content, mobile applications and services, value-added services, connected consumer electronics, and home systems were discussed at the Parks Associates 18th annual CONNECTIONS™ conference in the San Francisco Bay Area this week.

Energy Management applications, running on Smartphone platforms (iPhone or Android) or tablets are offered free, providing useful energy information at the home. These apps help residents manage energy use to save money, and provide more than connectivity or immediate feedback to users, but also execute analysis software and analytics algorithms. These platforms give key insights to energy use, track progress in real-time, recommend actionable items, energy-saving devices and appliances, rebates, and even green deals.

Apps often utilize game-like user experiences and social media. Such solutions not only help consumers save money, but also move toward gradual change in behavior. Further, these apps usually compare current usage against typical households in the consumer's neighborhood, street, and county. One of these platforms is PeoplePower at http://www.peoplepowerco.com/mobile/

Another offering to consumers is Planet Ecosystems Utility System Optimizer, called the P-ECOSYS Platform, which is a full function utility consumer-engagement technology platform that can be implemented as a whole or by component. P-ECOSYS encompasses consumer outreach program elements, self-serve web tools, program field support, administration and reporting capabilities, and more. P-ECOSYS serves utilities (IOUs, municipal, and more) and local governments (city, county, state) in designing and executing effective engagement campaigns and helping residential consumers to reduce consumption, gain cost savings, and reduce carbon footprint. Planet Ecosystems declares a fully configured system within 60 days.

The platform also targets retailers (home control, appliances, equipment, etc.), security (home monitoring, surveillance), and telco (for example: Cable/Satellite and telephony). For more info check http://planetecosystems.com

Additional Information

About CONNECTIONS™ - The Connected Home Conference

The 18th-annual CONNECTIONS™ hosted more than 350 industry executives, leaders, media and analysts to multiple sessions on OTT video, mobile and product apps, connected CE, and the connected home.

Hosted by research firm Parks Associates, CONNECTIONS™ featured research presentations, keynotes, and interactive sessions focused on emerging technologies, value-added services, marketing and outreach strategies, and business models for the entertainment and smart home industries.

The event provided interactive discussion on consumer trends, and market analysis, with strategic insights from industry players on entertainment, mobile, and smart home market segments. Check the website for more information. For research materials and white papers click here.

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