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44 Percent of U.S. Online Adults Plan to Purchase a Smart Speaker

Meenakshi Ramasubramanian, Sr. Research Analyst , Consumer Technology Association (CTA)

Smart speakers and digital assistants are changing the way we interact with our devices, from our smartphones to our smart home products. And according to recent research from the Consumer Technology Association (CTA), consumers are excited about smart home technologies. On average, one in three U.S. online adults plan to purchase a smart home technology device within the next year.

Smart speakers powered by digital assistants top the list with 44 percent of U.S. online adults planning to purchase one. Seventy percent of current owners of smart home products use their devices every day and 89 percent report being satisfied with their product.

The advent of smartphones and other connected devices have raised consumer expectations of convenience when it comes to smart technology, and this category of in-home products is no exception as nearly one in five state that convenience is their key purchase driver. Security and ability to reduce utility bills by enabling energy efficiency are also strong drivers to purchase, especially among those who do not yet own smart home devices. 

Today’s consumers are savvy shoppers, and it is not surprising that cost is the top purchase barrier among non-owners (60 percent U.S. online adults). The smart home tech category also faces challenges common to any emerging technology, including poor consumer knowledge or lack of familiarity.

This challenge is unique because there is both a lack of knowledge about individual products, as well as how the ecosystem of smart home technologies works together to create a level of convenience, help consumers improve home security and save on costs. While these barriers to purchase do exists, it’s also very important to note that there is a high level of satisfaction among owners of these devices, and those who own two or more devices are significantly more satisfied than those who own only one.

Interestingly, consumers who do not currently own a smart home device are looking to physical retail stores (58 percent of U.S. online adults who do not own a smart home tech product) to learn more about these products, particularly older consumers.

The benefit of using an ecosystem of smart home tech products can best be appreciated and recognized when consumers experience it in addition to reading about it. Consumers already go to brick and mortar stores for expanding their knowledge about smart home tech, therefore these establishments have a significant role to play in educating consumers about the category through providing an immersive experience. And for the manufacturers, significantly higher satisfaction among multiple device owners highlights the need for interoperable devices to best serve the industry.

Want more smart home research? Learn more from CTA.