Smart Home market to boom in 2020 : New trends in smart elevators + smoke detectors

The smart home market is a hot topic in 2014, but is expected to explode by 2020. Thanks to technology’s ability to aid in resource allocation for homeowners, programmable and cloud-managed services are growing in appeal as costs decrease.

In a new report published by Allied Market Research entitled “Global Smart Homes, Buildings (Energy Efficient, Automated) Market (Applications, Technologies, Products and End-User), Size, Share, Trends, Analysis, Research, Future Demand, Scope and Forecast, 2013 – 2020,” it was concluded that the global smart home and buildings market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 29.5 percent between 2012 and 2020.

The current market revenue of $4.8 billion in 2012 is expected to grow up to $35.3 billion by 2020.  The huge increase in is attributed to government regulations, rising energy costs and raising awareness with respect to environmental concerns.

“This market is expected to evidence significant growth due to growing security concerns and enhanced safety features that smart automation systems can currently offer. With an increase in the working population, safety concerns with respect to aged parents and children is the biggest challenge. Smart home address these issues with highly-sophisticated remote monitoring technologies,” states Shreyas Naidu.

Though it is expected that the smart home market will boom in coming years, there are still some restraints that hinders the smart home market to move forward, such as high upfront cost, lack of industry standards and interoperability among these home automation systems.  If these aren’t addressed, the projected growth of the market may be greatly affected.

Helping to push the smart home market forward, this week’s SmartHome roundup features Microsoft’s smart elevators, Piper’s North American roll out and Birdi’s next-gen smoke detector.

Smart elevators


Elevators are usually installed in buildings but no one’s stopping you if you want to install one in your home, especially if it’s a smart one that knows when you want to get on and what floor you want to go to.

Microsoft’s lab in Redmond, WA, is testing its smart elevator.  It has been fitted with a Kinect camera that learns people’s posture signals to determine if people are just passing by or waiting to get in.  The second phase of this effort is to get people and the elevator to interact with each other.  It can be as simple a jiggling the doors to ask if the person wants to board, and the person will then respond with a nod or shake of the head.

No news yet as to when we can actually see this in malls or buildings, but know that Microsoft is working hard on it.

Piper rolls out in North America


What started as a crowdfunding campaign, Piper has achieved what other startups only dreamt of, as it has began rolling out to homes in North America.  Piper is a home security and automation system rolled into a sleek little package.  It uses a combination of panoramic video, Z-Wave home automation, and environmental sensors, all wrapped in an appropriately sized device that can be controlled using your mobile device.  Users can customize it according to their schedule such as sounding off the alarms, recording a video, and sending a text message when motion is detected when you’re not at home.

Piper is available for $239 for a single device, a bundle of three for $649, or bundled with the or five Z-Wave smart accessories for $359, and $849, respectively.




Don’t let the name fool you. It’s not a toy, and it’s definitely not a bird. Birdi is what you may call a next generation smoke detector as it not only detects smoke caused by fire, or detect high levels of carbon monoxide, but also monitors the air quality to let you know if the air is safe for you to breathe or if there are any poisonous fumes.

image via Birdi

Birdi can be controlled using your smartphone and it sends you alerts when you need them, not in the middle of the night while you’re sleeping.  Birdi is smart enough to detect if there’s a fire, or someone is just smoking, or if there are pollen present in the air.

Birdi is on Indiegogo aiming to raise $50,000.  If you’re interested in being one of the first to get your very own Birdi, be sure to back the project.

photo credit: andyp uk via photopin cc
photo credit: Gwen Vanhee via photopin cc