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.
Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) is working with IBM to create “smarter buildings”.
CMU wants to save 10 percent on utilities using a cloud based analytics system to reduce energy and operating costs.
It thinks the savings will be worth up to $2 million a year when the IBM system is used over 36 buildings on its campus in Pittsburgh.
Donald Coffelt, a VP for CMU’s facilities management service said using the IBM system will give a “very attractive return on investment”.
He said: “This technology offers us important gains in initiatives related to advanced infrastructure systems research, the Pittsburgh 2030 initiative and a more proactive building and infrastructure management model.”
Estimates are that buildings will be the biggest consumer of global energy in 10 years time but while systems report data across building networks, most organisations don’t use the the data as well as they could.
The CMU technology will kick off with a pilot in nine buildings and then be extended to other buildings, with full implementation ready in three years, said IBM.