The Parks Associates (www.parksassociates.com) research group finds growing consumer interest in smart home automation solutions, with 26% of U.S. broadband households planning to purchase a smart thermostat during the 2013 holiday season.
“Roughly 25% of broadband households with new home management and home entertainment equipment report experiencing problems with these devices on a monthly basis, a surprisingly high amount,” says Patrice Samuels, research analyst, Parks Associates. “Robust technical support will help consumers to achieve the promise of these devices and mitigate consumer frustration.”
Parks Associates research finds 30% of consumers with electronic door locks regularly experience technical problems with these solutions, including 9% on a daily basis. Over 20% of smart thermostat owners regularly experience problems, including 12% on a daily basis.
“IP-enabled controllers, a proliferation of intelligent sensors and the ubiquity of smartphones and tablets have made possible a wide range of new home automation and security applications. With the increasing dependence on connected technology, and the importance of helping consumers get the most out of new home automation purchases, technology support is more important than ever,” says James Morehead, vice president, Product Management, Support.com. “When customers reach out for technology support it is a moment of truth and can be the difference between a satisfied customer, a returned product or a canceled subscription.”
As the digital landscape of consumers’ homes, enabled by the Internet of Things, grows more complex, consumers will interact with, and encounter problems with, home automation and security, medical monitoring, home energy management and mobile devices. Technical support services will play an increasingly important role in ensuring the customer gets started quickly and easily and gets the full benefits over the life of the product or service, according to Parks Associates.