Mobile Device Growth to Power Expansion of Home Networks: Gartner
With the number of connected devices in the home increasing, home networks provide the foundation to connect mobile devices and appliances.Global mobile devices per household—outside of smartphones with a mobile data plan--will increase by more than 8 percent annually through 2016, while 60 million WiFi-only devices (mostly tablets) per year will be added to the household around the world, according to a report from IT research firm Gartner. As the use of multiple connected devices in the home continues to increase year over year, home networks provide the foundation to connect mobile devices, appliances and systems in the home. The report concluded that a network able to share a "robust, reliable and fast" fixed broadband access in the home would provide a cost-effective alternative to a metered mobile data plan. "There are almost 10 potentially Internet-enabled devices in the home today and while consumers primarily use the home network to share and view video content, the home network also enables other applications, such as home protection, monitoring and security, as well as fitness and health monitoring," Fernando Elizalde, principal research analyst at Gartner, said in a statement. Gartner analysts believe that home automation solutions will also become an integral part of the home network, however, the multiplicity of home automation wireless standards remains a challenge. While WiFi is already widely deployed in homes today, the high power consumption of devices using this technology is a challenge in home automation. As a result, several wireless technologies other than WiFi that use a lot less power are currently being used.
The penetration rates of other video-specific Internet-connectible devices, such as TVs, set-top boxes, digital video recorders (DVRs), video players, game consoles and cameras, is also expected to also grow as manufacturers progressively make connectivity a default feature in most devices, the report said.