New research from The Dock, Accenture’s flagship R&D and Global Innovation Centre, reveals that despite millennials being amongst the biggest users of smart technology, they are more nervous than any other age group about using it in the home.
According to the report, Putting the Human First in the Future Home, while millennials see positive benefits of smart home technology such as the belief they make life easier and more fun, they have significant concerns. Of the millennials surveyed in the UK, 55% said they find it intrusive, compared to a national average of 48%. And 40% said they are too dependent on the technology compared to 29% of 35-44 year-olds, the next most concerned group.
The research uncovered a number of reasons for this. Two in five millennials said they are fearful that smart devices in their homes know too much about them, compared to just 29% of 35-44 year-olds and 36% of 45-64 year-olds. And the majority of millennials, 65%, do not trust that the data collected on them by devices in the home is stored securely.
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Surprisingly, the most open group are the over 65s. Not only are they most likely to trust their information is being collected and stored securely (46%), but their concerns around the isolating effects of technology are also lower than any other age group (51%).
Claire Carroll, portfolio director at Accenture’s The Dock, said: “As future homeowners and potential smart home customers, younger generations are a crucial market. But this research shows that brand understanding of this group’s anxieties around technology is limited. Rationalising the fears of millennials around dependency, intrusiveness, and isolation will be vital to the product design strategy of the future. Those aged 65 and over emerge as an avenue for opportunity.”
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“There is no single technological solution to the future home – but to design smart home products that will have longevity, companies need to better understand what’s happening in the black box of their customers’ behaviour in the home. This means understanding customer attitudes throughout their various life stages, what the idea of home actually means to them and getting a better appreciation of their surprising behaviour behind the front door.”
For the report, The Dock surveyed over 6,000 people, in 13 countries between November and December 2018. The full report can be found here.