Study Predicts Five-Year Spike in Adoption of Network-Connected Devices

The Internet of Things should continue to expand at a high rate through 2019, research from Accenture Interactive has revealed.

by / August 19, 2014
Wearable fitness devices -- like the FitBit Flex shown here -- are expected to have 22 percent adoption by 2015 and a 43 percent adoption in the next five years, according to a new study. Jessica Mulholland

Sixty-nine percent of consumers plan to buy an in-home, network-connected device during the next five years, according to the 2014 State of the Internet of Things Study. In addition, approximately 13 percent of consumers will own an Internet of Things (IoT) device by the end of 2015.

The study, conducted by Acquity Group, a digital marketing agency of Accenture Interactive, was based on a survey of more than 2,000 consumers across the U.S., noting their preferences for and barriers against use of the Internet of Things. The study also noted that wearable IoT items such as smart watches should gradually increase through 2019.

IoT technology consists of physical devices that connect to the Internet and share data intelligently with each other.

“These digital devices present major opportunities for improving a brand’s customer experience for a range of consumers,” said Jay Dettling, president of Acquity Group, in a statement. “Our data reveals that it’s not only tech enthusiasts who are interested in these kinds of products, but late adopters who also express interest in buying them.”

Among the IoT devices expected to be adopted quickly are those with a fitness or safety purpose. The study reports the following devices are expected to be the most popular ones purchased over the next few years:

  • Wearable fitness devices (expected to have 22 percent adoption by 2015; expected to have 43 percent adoption in the next five years).
  • Smart thermostats (13 percent projected adoption in the next year; 43 percent in the next five years).
  • Connected security systems (11 percent adoption in the next year; 35 percent in the next five years).

Research also uncovered that expansion of wearable technology varies by gender and age, with 53 percent of men planning to buy wearable tech in the next five years, compared to 45 percent of women. Millennials will outpace Baby Boomers in IoT technology purchases during the same time period, according to the study.

In regard to in-home IoT technology growth, where a person lives is more likely to dictate the proliferation of network-connected devices. Study findings showed that 74 percent of consumers residing in the Northeast plan to adopt an in-home IoT device by 2019. Those in the Midwest (68 percent) and Southeast (66 percent), are slightly less likely.

-- Brian Heaton