(PRWEB) December 01, 2013
According to a new market research report, ‘European Smart Homes and Assisted Living Market (2009-2014)’, the European smart homes market is expected to be worth €152.2 million ($195.9 million) by 2014, at a CAGR of 11.1% from 2009 to 2014. Southern Europe is expected to account for more than 38% of the total market size.
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Smart homes incorporate automated controls in retrofit homes to facilitate minimal manual effort in domestic chores; thus improving convenience and overall lifestyle, especially for the elderly and disabled. Different integrating products and common technology is used for communication between the devices.
The European (retrofit) smart homes and assisted living market is a niche market with a significant growth potential, driven primarily by the increase in the ageing population (65 years-80 years) in the European Union. UK, Germany, and the Scandinavian countries are expected to dominate the market due to the tendency of the aged to live separately from their children and ready acceptance of the smart homes concept in these countries.
Almost a quarter of the E.U. population is expected to be of age 65 years and above by 2035. The European Commission has thus begun underlining the need to use new information and communication technologies (ICT) to enhance the quality of life for the elderly by providing them ICT-enabled ambient assisted living options through the new-age concept of automated or smart homes.
Italy, Spain, Sweden, Germany, and the U.K. have taken joint as well individual management and financial measures to ensure the use of mechanisms enabling the integration of this population segment in the information age. Day-to-day living by means of smart homes forms one of the most important aspects of this integration, which also has a substantial socio-economic impact as the elderly in these countries have a significant wealth and considerable spending power.
The main factors restraining market growth in the present scenario are the target population’s lack of awareness about the smart homes concept, the digital divide that excludes elderly from ICT benefits, and the lack of an integrated user-friendly interface to control the smart home systems. However, the market offers immense potential for small and medium enterprises (SMEs), as these have the ability to form stronger customer relationships, to precisely identify customer needs and to offer customized solutions for the same.
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