In my previous blogs I’ve talked about the start of the connected home party, the impact of social media and the types of energy offerings we see in the market. Today, I’d like to consider telcos and explain why energy isn’t the priority for most telcos, and why, based on our latest connected home research report, I think this could be a mistake.
Telcos could be the perfect hosts for the connected home party
The telcos are well positioned for an emerging market like the connected home. They have a large customer base, shops and e-channels, network quality, different access channels and services, billing system in place. They can drive and shape this emerging market.
Telcos have understood that this market won’t be about single point solutions. There will be customers interested in security, others in smarter lighting systems, others in entertainment, others in assisted living etc. Their aim is therefore to be in the centre of the connected home via the internet router or a gateway that would be compatible with several types of products. The model is simple: their partners will pay to be on the platform and the telcos will deal with services, customer support etc.
Most telcos seem to be adopting the US model to develop their European businesses
US telcos and broadband companies entered the connected home space starting with offering security / peace of mind solutions to their end-users, then expanding their platforms to offer energy and other solutions. Comcast and AT&T are perfect examples.
But Delta-ee see limited success from European telcos to date in adopting this approach. Our latest detailed research is available in our new connected home report, which identifies and examines reasons why the US approach might never work in Europe, such as:
– The European security / peace of mind market is highly fragmented
– The demand for security products is lower than in the US
– European citizens are not willing to pay as much as Americans for security products
I do see evidence that telcos are already waking up to the potential of energy in their connected home offering. The conclusion of the last group discussion at a telco/broadband Digital home summit I attended in Berlin recently was:
And we do see some examples of telcos which recognise that the European party will be different to the US, and energy has a more important role to play. Qivicon is one example where energy features strongly in its offering.
But I believe energy needs to become a higher priority for many telcos than it is today, and there are many opportunities to create partnerships or complementary offerings with energy companies and heating equipment manufacturers, many of whom are now actively engaged in this space but do not yet have clearly developed strategies. Rather than being a ‘pull-through’ product, energy could be the gateway to the home for many European consumers.
For more information on the Delta-ee Connected Home Service, email me at email@example.com