By 2012: $6B wireless, smart home market

By Brian Dolan
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Global wireless sensor networking services, including home health initiatives and smart grids, will be a $6 billion market worldwide by 2012, according research firm ON World.

"Two years ago home owners were installing wood floors and pools but today they are installing in-home energy management and health systems," says Mareca Hatler, ON World research director. "This trend is being driven by government initiatives and consumers that are demanding cost saving solutions for two of their largest expenses: energy and healthcare," she says.

ON World noted that wireless sensor-enabled networks "provide dozens of solutions to healthcare's biggest challenges such as an aging population and rising healthcare costs." The firm pointed to Bluetooth as the current wireless technology leader in home healthcare products, but also noted Continua Health Alliance's recent selection of ZigBee's Health Care profile as a recommended technology for low power local area networks, like sensors networks distributed throughout an assisted living facility. ON World also mentioned AT&T's planned telehealth monitoring service that uses ZigBee and WiFi.

For more on ON World's report, read the company's release after the jump.

$6 Billion Wireless Sensor Network Smart Home Market in 2012

San Diego, CA (PRWEB) July 8, 2009 -- Multi-billion dollar smart grid and home health initiatives are driving the Smart Home market despite a challenging economy, according to ON World. The energy crisis and out-of-control healthcare spending have governments and the private sector scrambling to develop smart technologies such as Wireless Sensor Networking (WSN) that pay for themselves in months, not years. In 2012, ON World predicts that global WSN products and services for the Smart Home will be worth $6 billion.

"Two years ago home owners were installing wood floors and pools but today they are installing in-home energy management and health systems," says Mareca Hatler, ON World research director. "This trend is being driven by government initiatives and consumers that are demanding cost saving solutions for two of their largest expenses: energy and healthcare," she says.

Wireless Sensor Networks for Smart Homes While consumer spending is more selective than ever, ON World is finding that the financial crisis is accelerating the convergence of wireless sensor networks, information technologies, and Telecom solutions. This environment has created demand for Wireless Sensor Networking and new Smart Home services opportunities.

The major forces driving the Smart Home market include the following:

Smart Grid
Energy directives and smart grid initiatives have attracted hundreds of companies with energy management systems including GE, Cisco, Google, and Microsoft. ON World predicts that 100 million smart meters will be rolled out worldwide over the next five years and half of these will have an integrated gateway to communicate with in-home systems for energy management and demand response.

Wireless Sensor Network (WSN) technologies such as ZigBee and low-power WiFi are enabling a new generation of utility-to-consumer networks that prevent the need for new power plants, lower carbon emissions, and reduce energy consumption. While WiFi supports IP addressing to the node, ZigBee offers "Smart Energy," the industry's only profile for in-home communications that is being adopted by utilities and energy providers worldwide.

Home Health
WSN based technologies such as Ambient Assisted Living and Body Sensor Networks provide dozens of solutions to healthcare's biggest challenges such as an aging population and rising healthcare costs. While Bluetooth has been used in the majority of the initial healthcare products, ZigBee's Health Care profile was recently endorsed by the Continua Health Alliance as its low power local area network standard. AT&T recently announced a telehealth monitoring service that uses ZigBee and WiFi.

IP Smart Objects
Internet Protocol (IP) based sensor networking promises to connect the consumer with their Smart Home and the Smart Home to the cloud. The IETF and IPSO Alliance are underway with standards and interoperability testing that focus on using IP as the network, regardless of the underlying physical or transport layers. The IPSO Alliance recently provided a global demonstration of IP connected objects that collected 100,000 temperature, humidity, and light readings from sensors deployed in three continents.

Illustrating the migration to IP sensor networking is the ZigBee Alliance working with the IETF to expand its Smart Energy profile in order to support native IP and to allow integration of Internet connectivity into each product.

Based on 400+ interviews, ON World has published several reports on the Smart Home including the recently published "Energy Smart Home Area Networks," "Wireless Sensor Networks for Smart Homes," and "Wireless Sensor Networks for Healthcare." These reports may be purchased as part of set to save one third off the price for reports purchased separately. More information is available from: http://onworld.com/smarthomeset

About ON World:
ON World Inc. is the leader in Smart Technology research. Our market intelligence and information services are sold to Fortune 1000 companies, service providers, venture capitalists, and startups worldwide. See: http://www.onworld.com.

Media Contact:
Mary E. Purvis
ph: 858-259-2397

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