Internet of Things not so clever as scepticism holds back the rise of smart homes

Jake Cordell
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Who wants their fridge to talk to their TV? Not that many of us, apparently
Who wants their fridge to talk to their TV? Not that many of us, apparently (Source: Getty)

Households are failing to put their money where their mouth - or their food - is when it comes to the Internet of Things (IoT), a new survey into connected devices from consultants Deloitte has found.

While two-thirds of UK consumers said they believed IoT gadgets could make their lives better, only half of us own a smart device and these are almost exclusively entertainment systems.

The IoT is a catch-all term used to describe any number of household appliances and personal devices, from cars to fridges, that are connected to the internet and can talk to each other. However, despite consumers saying they like the idea, the survey of more than 4,000 found high prices and scepticism over whether the technology is advanced enough, is preventing the IoT from really taking off in the UK.

Seven in ten shoppers told Deloitte they would not be buying any connected devices over the next twelve months and the only kinds of products owned by more than one in thirty households were smart TVs, entertainment systems and games consoles.

Read more: Big data and the Internet of Things could be worth a shed load to the UK economy by 2020

Just three per cent of people had a connected security system, the same number as owned a smart thermostat. Only two per cent had any form of home appliance, such as a fridge, cooker or kettle that was plugged in to the internet.

However, in a sign of the industry’s long-term potential, up to 40 per cent of consumers said they would consider buying a smart device when they come to upgrading their current appliances.

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