A report from IDC estimates that there’s so much interest in so-called smart buildings that spends will grow to $17.4 billion worldwide by 2019.
IDC said that although the market had been expected to blossom before now, it’s flowering pretty vigorously and will soon bear fruit.
Growth will be concentrated at first in North America, Europe and Asia Pacific, with people becoming a bit smarter themselves and realising that investing in the technology can save money.
Commercial buildings in particular are expected to grow more than domestic buildings and companies realise that such construction can save energy as well as create operational efficiencies, the report said.
In Europe, legislation driven by EU regulations is helping the market to burgeon.
Spending in 2014 was only $6.3 billion but that’s expected to rise at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 22.6 percent, reaching $17.4 billion by 2019.
That figure, however, is only a small percentage of the whole construction market.
Light bulbs using LED technology that know where they are and can be programmed are still in an early stage of development.
But that is about to change, said ABI Research – suggesting that while shipments were less than 2.5 million units in 2013, by 2020 the installed base is likely to be over 400 million.
LEDs using 802.15.4 protocols – that’s wi-fi – are likely to be the winners representing a three quarter share of the market. ZigBee Light Link will be the preferred way of connection.
Prices of LED bulbs are continuing to fall and the market is likely to be saturated pretty quickly because of their typically longer life.
There is quite a gaggle of players in the market already including Philips, GE, Osram, Belin, Insteaon, LG and Samsung.
Malik Saadi, director at ABI Research said that smart lighting will be fuelled by customer lifestyle patterns including automation and high energy efficiency.
Philips already sells light bulbs and lighting strips that can be programmed to turn on or off as people arrive at or leave their houses, and can be switched off and on remotely using the internet.